Kawailani work expected to wrap up in late January

  • HOLLYN JOHNSON/Tribune-Herald New streetlights are wrapped with black plastic Friday on Kawailani Street in Hilo.

Although delayed slightly, the Kawailani Street road project is close to completion nearly two years after work began.

Barett Otani, an executive assistant for Mayor Harry Kim, said there have been “a lot of rain out days. We do not want to pave when it rains.”

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“With the unworkable days, we are now targeting the end of January for completion,” he said.

Work began on the Hawaii County project in March 2017.

The nearly $20.2 million project will add stop signals at two closely spaced intersections in Hilo at Kawailani and Iwalani streets and Kawailani Street and Ainaola Drive.

The project also includes grading; paving; installing drainage improvements, water mains, retaining walls, and street lighting; constructing sidewalks, curbs and gutters, driveways, curb ramps and paved swales; and installing pavement markings and signs, according to a March 2017 news release.

Otani said work originally was estimated to finish at the end of 2018, but in May, that completion date was pushed back to January 2019.

According to Otani, crews need to finish the final paving lift, striping and signage, as well as energize the traffic signals.

“We plan to energize the lights after we complete the striping work, which should be around the middle of January.”

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The project is within budget and no additional funds are required, Otani said.

Email Stephanie Salmons at ssalmons@hawaiitribune-herald.com.

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