Ala Moana Center renovations mean changes for shoppers

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Workers are keeping busy on Ala Moana Center redevelopment as signs and roadblocks reroute drivers and pedestrians to get around.

In three days there will be a new change. Cars will no longer be able to use a key road. A section of Kona Street from Piikoi to Kona Iki Streets will be closed heading Diamond Head-bound through the end of next week.

“We would recommend access along Ala Moana Boulevard or Atkinson if you are used to coming from Piikoi side,” Ala Moana Center spokesperson Scott Creel said.

“It will make it a lot harder for customers to get in to the restaurant. They usually depend on the parking lot outside, but one way, in one way out will be a little bit tough,” said Damien Zukeran with Eggs ‘N Things.

Shoppers are already finding it slow-going getting to and from Ala Moana.

“We try to make just one trip instead of multiple trips and we avoid it if possible because it takes a lot longer,” shopper Shauna Gabriel said.

Drivers who take the Piikoi Street ramp are being rerouted into the Mauka-Ewa parking structure. But that will also see some changes.

Kona Street will be closed so crews can install a large crane to begin building more levels of parking to make up for the lost parking around the old Sears store.

“Expect to add four to five levels, adding at least 1,000 new parking stalls to our current inventory of 10,000 parking stalls,” Creel said.

In the meantime, shops at Ward Warehouse say the changes will do them some good.

“I think we will have more people over to Ward Warehouse. We have the structure parking, parking right here in front of the stores, right behind the stores. It’s convenient,” Eden in Love owner Tanna Dang said.

“Great for us. I’ve noticed it a lot especially in the afternoons when people are getting out of work or they need to get dinner we have a rush a real pickup from 5 to 7 p.m.,” said Amanda Delacruz with Cottage by the Sea.

Ala Moana Center management says they have several options on the table to spice up the look. They hope to reveal the design sooner than later.

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