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More APEC leaders arriving; new Waikiki road closures start today

By Gregg K. Kakesako

LAST UPDATED: 08:29 p.m. HST, Nov 11, 2011

The arrival of more world leaders, including Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, and new security restrictions on Ala Moana Boulevard backed up traffic this morning.

More leaders arrived this evening, and increased security began at 5 a.m. in Waikiki, including restricting inbound Waikiki traffic and Ala Moana Boulevard to vehicles connected to APEC. Later, in-bound traffic from Kalakaua Avenue will be restricted.

Leaders from Canada and Japan arrived within 10 minutes of each other, with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper's plane touching down first at 7:21 p.m.

Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda's plane pulled up to the arrival area at Hickam just after Harper's motorcade cleared the area. Noda was greeted by Gladys Boluda, U.S. State Department deputy chief of protocol, along with Ichiro Fujisaki, Japanese Ambassador to the United States, and U.S. Army Air Force Brig. Gen. Mark M. McLeod.

President Barack Obama, who watched the North Carolina-Michigan State college basketball game aboard an aircraft carrier in San Diego before leaving for Hawaii, was scheduled to arrive later tonight.

The plane of Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak touched down at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam at 3:45 p.m.

Razak was greeted at the air field by a small delegation of Malaysian officials that included Malaysian Foreign Minister Anifah Aman and Ambassador Jamaludin Jarjis, and their wives. U.S. State Department Deputy Chief of Protocol Gladys Boluda also greeted the prime minister.

His motorcade of about a dozen vehicles was on its way by 4 p.m.

The plane carrying Russian President Dmitry Medvedev arrived at 9:25 a.m. Police shut down freeway overpasses, the freeway and other roads into Waikiki as his motorcade left Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam at about 9:33 a.m. All roads and overpasses reopened by 9:51 a.m.

The city is asking motorists to plan ahead and be patient as the summit continues. Freeway closures may cause up to an hour's delay, Mayor Peter Carlisle said.

The new security restrictions on Ala Moana Boulevard also backed up traffic today and the city is asking motorists to avoid Ala Moana, if possible.

Julia Gillard, the prime minister of Australia, was the first to touch down at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-HIckam today, getting off her Royal Australian Air Force plane under cloudy skies at about 7:24 a.m. A Philippines Airlines plane carrying President Benigno Aquino III touched down at about 8:19 a.m. Chile's President Sebastian Pinera arrived at 8:35 a.m. Brunei's leader Sultan Sir Bolkiah Hassanal, whose motorcade left at 9:21 a.m.

At this morning's daily news conference, Honolulu Managing Director Doug Chin said Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama are expected to arrive at about 10:45 p.m. tonight.

Police are closing roads and freeways when President Obama, Medvedev and Chinese President Hu Jintao travel. Chin said there should be no major road closures outside of Waikiki on Saturday. However, the temporary road closures, especially on the H-1 Freeway -- will occur on Sunday as the delegates go to Ko Olina, where meetings will be held. He also said motorists should expect more temporary traffic delays on Monday and Tuesday as world leaders leave the islands.

Security restrictions remain in effect for the area around the Hawai'i Convention Center. But Kapiolani Boulevard and Atkinson Drive will be open to traffic, except for the barriers immediately around the convention center on Saturday.

City Transportation Service Director Wayne Yoshioka said starting at 5 a.m. today cars entering Waikiki using Ala Moana Boulevard are being stopped near the Hawaii Prince Hotel and searched.

Pedestrians will be asked to show some forms of identification and ?could also be searched.?

Yoshioka said all cars trying to enter Waikiki on Ala Moana Boulevard are being diverted to Holomoana Street near the Hawaii Prince Hotel and searched.

?He suggested that people needing to go to Waikiki this weekend enter the area using McCully Street or Kapahulu Avenue.?

The check point is part of the security zone around the Hale Koa, Hilton Hawaiian Village, Hawaii Prince, Modern Waikiki and Sheraton Waikiki hotels.?The Secret Service plan for the security zone calls for all Ala Moana Boulevard lanes in the Koko Head direction to be closed to all but APEC-related traffic starting at about 10 p.m.

One Ewa-bound lane will be contra-flowed to allow other traffic out of the area.?

Another checkpoint will be set up tonight on Kalakaua Avenue between Ala Moana Boulevard and Saratoga Road, which will restrict access to APEC traffic only.

Lanes will be open for the public from Ala Moana Boulevard to the? Kalakaua and Kuhio avenues split and traffic going into Waikiki will be diverted to Kuhio Avenue.?

East-bound lanes of Saratoga Avenue and all of Kalia Road between Ala Moana ?Boulevard and Saratoga Road will be for APEC traffic only.?

The public can access to Saratoga Road, Beachwalk Road and Kalia Road at Lewers Street between Helumoa Road and Kalia Road.? Lewers Street will run makai, against the normal traffic pattern, from Kuhio Avenue to Kalakaua Avenue.? Beachwalk Road traffic will run mauka only, also against the normal traffic pattern.? Security restrictions remain in effect for the area around the convention center.

But Kapiolani Boulevard and Atkinson Drive will be open to traffic, except for the barriers immediately around the convention center ?on Saturday.?

Yoshioka said city officials were asked to keep Kapiolani Boulevard between Kalakakua Avenue and Kaheka Street and Atkinson Boulevard closed for another day because of security concerns.

?New parking restrictions also begin in Waikiki today and bus service will be routed around the closures.?

The Ala Wai Boat Harbor and ocean waters off the Hilton and Fort DeRussy beach will also be closed starting tonight through Saturday night.?

The Waikiki Post Office will close tonight through Sunday. The post office is open today.

Garbage will be picked up at 4:30 a.m. Saturday instead of 6:30 a.m. and there will be no bulky item pickup in the security zone.


APEC Hale Koa Security ZoneAPEC security restrictions for Waikiki and Ko Olina

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KeithHaugen wrote:
News reports from the Mayor's office have us so focused on all of the road blocks and traffic congestion caused by APEC that we seem to be forgetting other things that matter, like closing `Iolani Palace, banning paddling on the Ala Wai, and a myriad of other things that keep the foreigners from seeing things culturally Hawaiian. Next time (if there is one) that we host a major, international event such as this, let's show them Hawai`i, and Hawaiians, and Hawaiian culture. And let's use some common sense in shuttling the VIPs around on our Island. A plain clothes HPD officer, driving an unmarked sedan, could take even the most important visitor from the airport to his/her hotel and never be noticed. In fact, unrecognized by almost everyone, even if they happen to see them passing by. We could save untold millions of dollars and not inconvenience residents. For those whose egos are so big that they require a limo, and an escort by dozens of HPD vehicles with solo bikes racing ahead at breakneck speed to block intersections, overpasses, etc., take them from the airport to a hotel by helicopter.
on November 11,2011 | 06:34AM
kispest wrote:
Keith, I wish you would replace the Mayor and the Governor!
on November 11,2011 | 07:41AM
kennysmith wrote:
i just wish they could do a lot better for waikiki area only?.
on November 11,2011 | 03:01PM
kennysmith wrote:
i just wish they could do a lot better for waikiki area only?.
on November 11,2011 | 03:01PM
phileijorgensen wrote:
Spot on Keith!
on November 11,2011 | 07:51AM
aomohoa wrote:
I thought parks of the Ala Wai were off limits and I thought I heard they were closing the Palace. Am I wrong?
on November 11,2011 | 04:25PM
Kauikalewa wrote:
Mahalo e Keith, for the logical wisdom of ha`aha`a, humility. Traveling in a humble state and being invisible was part of the ali`i practice by standing in the smoke of puki`awe, to unburden the people of the status. How do these organizers not appreciate the value of being unrobed and allowed the freedom to just enjoy? They missed an opportunity. Get ready for more invasive attacks! Cars are now being required to stop and be searched to enter Waikiki and the conference areas. Further Ko`olina access is being shut down entirely Saturday 10 pm until Sunday 10 pm. What's with that? This has turned into a Comedy of Fantasized Vulnerability. Let's not do one of these again. We paid too much for the limelight. Hawai`i should always be Aloha with zero tolerance for violence of any kind to anyone. When is that going to be our only reality? It seems they brought it with them and made a show of it.
on November 11,2011 | 07:03AM
Kokoy wrote:
It's called security brother, maybe once the drugs wear off you should look try some reading.
on November 11,2011 | 08:50PM
islandsun wrote:
The mayor is a joke. Desnt know what he is doing. Send him back to the mainland...
on November 11,2011 | 09:05AM
Vivgie wrote:
All the post offices are closed today. Veteran's Day is a State and Fed holiday.
on November 11,2011 | 12:43PM
Benibiker wrote:
I don't like how Humvees are being used as escorts and used to block roads and overpasses. I don't like how activated Guardsmen are all over the place either. With all this military presence you would think they're driving these guys through downtown Baghdad or Kabul. Hawaii and Honolulu are some of the safest places in the world, we look like a militarized 3rd world country.
on November 11,2011 | 03:42PM
LanaUlulani wrote:
In other words Obama invited other elitists to come to Hawai'i which adversely affects working people who have to get to work. Some are getting stuck in traffic for nearly 2 hours. If they are late to work they can be fired. Obama should have invited elitists to his home in Chicago. Instead of further burdening the WORKING CLASS IN HAWAI'I.
on November 11,2011 | 08:01PM
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