IMMEDIATE SAFETY UPGRADES SOUGHT FOR MAKAKILO PEDESTRIANS
HONOLULU The death of a 39-year-old woman crossing Makakilo Drive Wednesday evening is the latest, tragic evidence of the need for immediate speed mitigation measures and pedestrian safety improvements in the area.
Councilmember Kym Pine has introduced a resolution urging the City and County of Honolulu to immediately release funds to make life-saving improvements in Kapolei, including along Makakilo Drive, Kapolei Parkway and Fort Barrette Road. <http://www4.honolulu.gov/docushare/dsweb/Get/Document-248168/RES19-318.htm>
Makakilo Drive, Kapolei Parkway and Fort Barrette Road are steep or have long straightaways, leading vehicles to speed, said Councilmember Kym Pine. In many spots, speeding drivers have no warning that pedestrians may cross the road which creates great danger for children, kupuna, joggers, dog-walkers and people trying to get to City bus stops, said Pine. The areas neighborhood board has been fighting for better traffic safety for years and this resolution is one way the Honolulu City Council can help.
On Kapolei Parkway and Fort Barrette Road, a high number of children and residents walk to Hookele Elementary School, Kapolei High School, Kapolei Regional Park and an increasing number of popular destinations. These pedestrians must compete with speeding vehicles.
The resolution notes that as part of its Complete Streets initiative, the City repaved Makakilo Drive and removed the crosswalk markings at the Kinohi Place and Aoloko, Newa and Nohohale Street intersections. These crosswalks were relied upon by students, kupuna and others going to and from Makakilo Elementary School and Makakilo Park, as well as bus riders using nearby City bus stops.
The pedestrian crossing signs were left in place, causing considerable confusion and making Makakilo Drive more dangerous to cross. Two months later, a 17 year-old youth was hit and seriously injured at the intersection of Makakilo Drive and Aoloko Street.
The Makakilo/Kapolei/Honokai Hale Neighborhood Board No. 34 fought against removal of the crosswalks prior to the repaving, said Transportation Committee Chair Michael Mick Ferreira.
We want to be a pedestrian-friendly community and the City is promoting that concept around Oahu. Crosswalk removal jeopardizes safety and we want to make our neighborhood as safe as possible, he said. Hopefully this resolution and the mitigation suggested will be able to help pedestrians stay safer.
The resolution also makes note of funding already budgeted for traffic improvements and urges the City to immediately release the funds, consider specific safety improvements, as well as to have the Director of Transportation Services provide a written report to the Council no later than 60 days following adoption of the resolution.
Councilmember Kym Pine represents residents of District One, comprising portions of Ewa Villages and Ewa Beach, Kapolei, Makakilo, Kalaeloa, Honokai Hale, Ko Olina, Nnkuli, Mili, Waianae, Mkaha, Keaau and Makua ) and is chair of the City Councils Committee on Business Economic Development and Tourism.
M: (808) 284-6044
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Communications Director, Councilmember Kymberly Pine
Honolulu City Council, District One
Main 808.768.5001 Direct 808.768.5024