City promises public input as officials expedite redesign of Chinatown ‘bulb-outs’

Local News

The city says it’s going to redesign the new sidewalk extensions, known as “bulb-outs,” that were added in Chinatown.

We first told you about them last month. Business owners told us delivery trucks were having a hard time getting through the tighter spaces, and as a result, business was suffering.

“It makes it very difficult for larger vehicles to maneuver, and so when you have this bulb-out, where you allow pedestrians to come out all the way close to the road in order to have a shorter crossing, you actually endangering them,” said Chu Lan Shubert-Kwock, a member of the Downtown-Chinatown Neighborhood Board.

“Most of the time, my customers call and pick it up, but they couldn’t find anywhere to park and pick up their lei. Then I have to serve them right on the curb on the street,” said business owner Sam Sei.

After hearing public testimony, a city council committee approved a resolution Thursday that outlines the following:

“BE IT RESOLVED by the Council of the City and County of Honolulu that it urges the City Administration to immediately remove all of the bulb-outs from the Chinatown Special District; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that before the Administration undertakes any further traffic-calming or complete streets measures for Chinatown, it consult with affected businesses and residents to determine possible impacts to deliveries, customer access, trash pick-ups, and vehicular access; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that any future traffic-calming or complete streets measures for Chinatown be designed to be compatible with the historic, architectural, and cultural significance of the area…”

The city promises it will give residents and businesses a chance to weigh in on the new redesigned sidewalks.

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