Aiea business owners say rail work narrowed their driveway

Aiea business owners say rail work narrowed their driveway
Published: May. 27, 2015 at 8:00 PM HST|Updated: May. 27, 2015 at 9:49 PM HST
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AIEA, OAHU (HawaiiNewsNow)

Mobile Car Audio shares a driveway on Kamehameha Highway with Auto Detail Kings and Hawaii Glass Tinting. Mobile Car Audio owner Ryan Lung said rail contractor Kiewit lengthened the sidewalk fronting the businesses.

"They added this ADA compliant ramp and this berm at the very last minute," he said.

The additions subtracted space. Lung said Kiewit narrowed the driveway opening considerably.

"Now people exiting this area, they have two choices," he said. "One, they can climb the curb. Or two, merge into the center lane of Kam Highway, both dangerous."

Dangerous because instead of merging into the closest lane, exiting vehicles have to take a wider turn. The business owners have seen several close calls.

"I just look at it as it's a potential accident waiting to happen," said Channon Narvaez of Auto Detail Kings.

"If there's an accident, any type of damages or God forbid bodily damage, who are they going to look at? They're going to look at the property owner, which is me," Lung said.

He said the extended sidewalk and took away 12 feet of driveway opening.

"This is an artificially created problem that didn't exist before. And now it does," he said.

Lung said his complaints to Kiewit got him nowhere, so he went to the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation with a suggestion.

"The fix can be to move the ADA compliant sidewalk ten feet to the right, like how it originally was, and life can go on," he said.

Wednesday afternoon HART engineers inspected the berm. A HART spokesperson told Hawaii News Now the berm that juts into the driveway will be removed, the ADA ramp relocated, and the driveway widened to what it was before.

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