While it is the most costly solution, clearly the installation of an elevated highway over Hana Highway is the best solution for a proposed airport access road to relieve traffic congestion on Dairy Road.
According to a story in The Maui News, a public meeting was held Monday evening at Maui Waena Intermediate School to discuss a new thoroughfare to handle traffic to the airport and surrounding box stores.
The freeway-style ramp would lift traffic over the Hana Highway. Other options discussed included stoplights at the intersection of the new road and Hana Highway and simply widening Dairy Road.
While stoplights would be cheaper than the ramp, we think that would simply be adding another piece of congestion to an already busy part of our island. And, don't forget, the Maui Business Park will be built out in the near future - adding even more traffic.
A road with a ramp over Hana Highway would allow those traveling to the airport and businesses like Costco and Kmart to avoid Dairy Road - and the traffic on Hana Highway.
The proposal to simply widen Dairy Road is the least desirable. Property would have to be acquired and during the construction phase Dairy Road would be a much bigger mess than it already is.
No, a second route running from the intersection of Puunene Avenue and Kuihelani Highway to the airport is the best solution, both long term and short term. And a ramp over Hana Highway would allow uninterrupted flow of traffic. Stoplights would disrupt traffic both on the highway and on the new access road.
* Editorials reflect the opinion of the publisher.