State aware of potholes on ‘new’ lane of H-1 Freeway

H-1 Freeway


For about a year, drivers have had to endure closures on the H-1 Freeway in the Ewa-bound direction, weekdays, nighttime and weekends, between Aiea and Waipahu.

The closures were necessary as the state built a new lane to help alleviate traffic.

But lately, viewers have been calling our newsroom to complain about its condition.

“In some areas, it’s a little patchy, like along the shoulder lane. It’s a little rough for something that’s brand new,” said driver Matthew Romaine.

We went out to see what drivers are talking about and found a bumpy ride riddled with potholes.

“I don’t think very much of it. I think it’s a lot of money that they spent. It’s taking too long to get done, quality work isn’t there,” said driver Kelly Keliikoa.

This widening project is part of the PM Contraflow project. With an $82 million cost, the entire project includes improvements to the freeway in both directions with ongoing lane closures.

Crews started working on this two years ago to help ease traffic in the Pearl City corridor.

On average, 2,000 cars travel on each lane per hour.

In May, the state began opening up the new lane in increments. The last portion, some 1,000 feet, will be open next month.

The state Department of Transportation says it’s aware of the potholes and the damage is not in the new construction, but rather part of what used to be the shoulder of the existing viaduct that has now become part of the new lane.

“Our focus is to finish the current project and get the full lane and new shoulder lane open… We are assessing how best to address the potholes after the lane is completed,” said DOT spokesman Tim Sakahara.

“Do you think it was worth it?” KHON2 asked.

“That’s a lot of impact for not as much of an effect,” Romaine said.

“I don’t think so,” Keliikoa said. “Because you still have your bottleneck points on on the main areas of the island that is still not addressed.”

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