HONOLULU (KHON2) — Construction on a new roundabout on the Windward side of Oahu will soon be underway, but many residents have mixed feelings about the project.
Many said something needs to be done, but almost everyone worries it will make traffic even worse.
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Construction of a roundabout is set to begin at the busy intersection of Kahekili and Kamehameha highways in Kahaluu, Wednesday June 7.
According to the Hawaii Department of Transportation, more than 20,000 cars pass through the area every day.
Kahaluu resident Ofa Clanton said speeding is an issue, and making the left turn from Kamehameha Highway to Kahekili Highway can be scary.
“There’s a lot of accidents. I see it with my own self a lot,” Clanton said.
The goal of the $5.4 million project is to reduce crashes and make the area safer for everyone
While some, like Clanton are in favor of it.
“I really think that’s the best decision that you guys make,” she said.
Many are not.
“This roundabout makes no sense whatsoever none,” Kahaluu resident Kalo Cornett said. “We are already congested in the morning as it is now you’re gonna make it worse.”
Causing more traffic and backlogs is the biggest concern residents shared.
Others, like Waiahole resident Shaun Dalemagnani, said it’s going to confuse drivers and feel the money could be better spent elsewhere.
“The round about, nah, we don’t really need that,” Dalemagnani said. “That’s gonna waste money. Go fix the road. We got plenty potholes to fix.”
Still Xander Quintero agreed something needs to be done.
“I know it’s a dangerous area,” Quintero added.
“Something needs to be done; and if we can’t get traffic lights, which is the solution, I guess around about going to have to be where we go,” said Quintero.
In addition to the roundabout, DOT plans to make other improvements including adding better street lighting and new bust shelters.
“Yeah, that’s great,” said Kaneohe resident Owen Welch. “All of that stuff is perfect, and that’s probably what this all needs. But a round-a-bout doesn’t make sense.”
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Once construction begins in June, DOT said the road will be contra flowed Mondays through Fridays from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Drivers should expect delays.