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State suspends closures 1 week for ‘Beat the School Jam’


    Vehicles travel along the H-1 freeway westbound at the Lunalilo St. onramp in 2012.

As thousands of students return to school this month, the Hawaii Department of Transportation announced it will suspend one week of morning road closures as part of its “Beat the School Jam” initiative.

From 6 to 8 a.m. between Aug. 20 to 24, the state will suspend construction-related road closures on major state highways, not including emergency closures. The state also reminds commuters of free, navigational tools available to the public.

For Windward commuters, the state said it has expanded GoAkamai and its mobile app offering up-to-the-minute traffic conditions and travel time information to cover the Pali and Likelike highways and the H-3 freeway.

In mid-July, the state also installed travel time message boards on Moanalua Freeway and the H-1 freeway Airport Viaduct to help commuters choose the quickest route.

More than 45,000 public, private and college students return to school this month, according to HDOT. Monday was the official first day of school for most public schools in Hawaii, although some held their first day today. University of Hawaii at Manoa students begin the fall semester Aug. 20.

“We have made significant improvements to Hawaii’s transportation infrastructure in the last few years,” said Gov. David Ige in a news release. “We will continue working to improve traffic and to help drivers and pedestrians safety navigate through our busy roadways.”

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