The H-3 Freeway opened in 1997, connecting Halawa to Windward Oahu.
Before cars were let onto the freeway, the state allowed people to run or walk along it as part of a race.
Now, 18 years later, there’s an opportunity for the public to ride a bicycle on the H-3 for the first time.
On Saturday, Oct. 24, the Hawaii Law Enforcement Memorial Foundation (HLEMF) is hosting the first-ever H3T Race to the Base triathlon. More than 300 athletes will be participating.
The race will require the state to close the H-3 Kaneohe-bound.
“It’s going to be an experience because you’re going to get to go, a little slow-going up but it’ll be a lot faster coming down, so that’s going to be really exciting,” H3T race coordinator Alan Sunio said.
The race begins at 6:15 a.m. with a 1,000-meter swim at Ala Moana Beach Park.
From there, participants will transition to bicycles for a 27-mile ride on Ala Moana Boulevard and Nimitz Highway, over the H-3 Freeway, onto Kaneohe Bay Drive, and to Aikahi Elementary School on Ilihau Street.
Participants will then compete in a 10-kilometer run. The out-n-back-course runs via Aikahi Loop, to Mokapu Road, to the turnaround through the back gate of Kaneohe Marine Corps Base, and returning to Aikahi Elementary School and the finish line.
The race is raising money for a great cause.
“We’re raising money to help build a memorial for our fallen officers in the state of Hawaii,” said Ed Ignacio of the Hawaii Law Enforcement Memorial Foundation.
The Hawaii Law Enforcement Memorial has been five years in the making and now work is finally set to start on the Civic Center grounds in Downtown Honolulu.
The memorial will honor the 65 law enforcement officers throughout the state who died in the line of duty.
Ignacio says their goal is to have it built by Thanksgiving so that people who go to see the Honolulu City Lights during the holidays can also go to see the new memorial.
Money raised from the triathlon will help pay for building costs and future maintenance costs.
“You want to raise as much as you can. We don’t have a set amount in our head, but this race is also an opportunity to bring this cause to the community and get everyone together to do something positive and contribute to this great foundation,” Ignacio said.
When asked if there’s a chance someone can just do the bike event, Sunio replied, “Unfortunately, this is a triathlon, so we’re only going to have one person from each team do the triathlon, or bike portion.”
Portions of Ala Moana Boulevard, Nimitz Highway, the H-1 and H-3 Freeways, Kaneohe Bay Drive, and Mokapu Boulevard will be closed at various times.
Honolulu police officers, sheriffs, Hawaii National Guardsmen, and personnel with the Department of Emergency Management will be stationed at various points of the route for safety and traffic control.
Police will attempt to let cross-traffic flow through once the bulk of the participants has passed. Most roads should be reopened to cross-traffic by 8 a.m. The triathlon is expected to be completed by 11:30 a.m.Click here for more information.
|Road||From||To||Closed||Open (times approximate)|
|Ala Moana Blvd. (east-bound)||Piikoi St.||Atkinson Dr.||6 a.m.||7:30 a.m.|
|Ala Moana Blvd./Nimitz Hwy. (west-bound)||Atkinson Dr.||Sand Island Access Rd.||6 a.m.||8 a.m.|
|Nimitz Hwy. (west-bound under viaduct)||Sand Island Access Rd.||Valkenburgh St.||6:30 a.m.||8:30 a.m.|
|H-1 (westbound two right lanes)||Valkenburgh St. on-ramp||Kaneohe-Honolulu off-ramp||6:30 a.m.||9 a.m.|
|Kaneohe-Honolulu off-ramp||H-1||H-3 Kaneohe (east-bound)||6:30 a.m.||After last cyclist|
|H-3 Kaneohe (east-bound)||All on-ramps||Kaneohe Bay Dr.||6:30 a.m.||After last cyclist|
|Kaneohe Bay Dr.||H-3 off-ramp||Ilihau St.||7 a.m.||After last cyclist|
|Ilihau St./Aikahi Lp. (one lane)||Kaneohe Bay Dr.||Mokapu Rd.||7 a.m.||After last runner|
|Mokapu Rd. (outbound)||Aikahi Lp.||MCBH||8 a.m.||After last runner|