REPORT FROM STATE SENATE MAJORITY– A groundbreaking ceremony was held on Friday, June 15, 2012, for the Kawela Stream Bridge Replacement Project on Moloka‘i. The $6 million project will replace the existing bridge, originally constructed in 1940, with a wider bridge that meets current seismic and vehicular loading standards. Senator J. Kalani English (District 6- Hana, East and Upcountry Maui, Moloka‘i, Lana‘i, and Kaho‘olawe) said the replacement of the bridge is long-awaited.
“I am pleased that the replacement of the Kawela Stream Bridge is underway,” said Senator English. “By meeting current standards and requirements, this project will help ensure that the public safety needs of Moloka‘i residents are met.”
Located on the Kamehameha V Highway, the Kawela Stream Bridge has faced multiple flooding incidents caused by heavy rains over the past two decades. Previous such incidents have resulted in the seclusion of eastside residents from the rest of the island.
“With the modernization of the bridge, residents will be able to continue on with their lives without interruption,” said Senator English. “The finalization of this project will bring much relief for many of our residents.”
The new bridge will be 21 feet longer and 19 feet wider than the current bridge and will include a shoulder for pedestrians and bicyclists. It will also be two feet higher, providing additional capacity for drainage flow for the Kawela Stream beneath.
The total cost of the replacement and construction of the Kawela Stream Bridge is $11,011,000 with $8,856,800 from Federal funds. Construction is anticipated to be complete in December 2013.