Very concerned about DOT’s plans for bypass
I am thankful for the Nov. 4 Maui News article about the Department of Transportation sharing data they’ve collected with the public through their website. I am also thankful that DOT Director Ford Fuchigami and Deputy Director Ed Sniffen came to Lahaina for a West Maui community plan workshop on transportation. I learned a lot at that meeting.
However, I am very concerned about DOT’s plans to force all motorists onto the southern terminus of the bypass at Cut Mountain early next year. I am very concerned about traffic lights on the bypass at Kai Hele Ku and Hokiokio despite input from our planning director, and I think that the transportation plan in its current state will only take our existing problems and move them mauka and into the center of Lahaina town (Keawe Street).
The Nov. 4 article states that Keawe to Kaanapali parkway is the second most heavily traveled stretch of highway with 43,300 vehicles traveling that area daily, so forcing people onto the bypass before the northern terminus is finished is not a good idea.
Also, before work begins on the northern terminus we need to consider the highway from the pali to the Cut Mountain entrance that is already getting inundated during high tides and large swells. I hope DOT will monitor and adaptively manage the situation, possibly by using a large highway-type roundabout like they have in Tahiti or Aotearoa to give people the option of taking the bypass or continuing the regular route. Tamara Paltin Lahaina