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Contractors finishing work on Kawaihae harbor dock

    The condition of the piers at Kawaihae in 2009.

KAILUA-KONA >> Kawaihae will likely have a new home for vessels by the end of the next month.

Contractors are finishing up work on a new floating dock and parking at Kawaihae Small Boat Harbor, West Hawaii Today reported Monday.

The $4.7 million project is designed to take the strain off the West Hawaii harbor’s crowded facilities.

The 445-foot floating dock has space for 25 slips, said Kris Maile, assistant superintendent of Hawaii Dredging Construction Co.

Gravel parking areas will have room for 11 boat trailers and 15 vehicles. It will have a 40-by-60-foot concrete wash-down area with two spigots.

Tina Davis, who works at Kohala Divers, said the facility will be a welcome addition. People have had to spend years on a waitlist for mooring at the harbor, she said.

The project was originally slated for completion this month, but the contractor ended up doing extra work shoring up a rock embankment along the edge of the harbor.

A planned boat ramp at the dock has been delayed after coral was discovered at the proposed site.

William Aila, who heads the state Department of Land and Natural Resources, said in April that much of the coral was already dead, having been killed by silt. The few remaining pieces of live coral were moved by hand.

The boat ramp is in the planning and design phase, department spokeswoman Deborah Ward said.

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