Kokua Line: Town-bound lanes of Pali Highway will level out with final coat of pavement
Question: Does DOT have its inspectors monitor repaving and acceptance of repaving work?
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Question: Does DOT have its inspectors monitor repaving and acceptance of repaving work? Driving on town-bound lanes of Pali Highway is like riding a roller coaster. Some areas could panic elderly drivers and cause an accident.
Answer: Yes, inspectors do monitor the work. Although you’re asking about the Pali Highway repaving project, other readers have expressed similar concerns about other roads. So we asked the state Department of Transportation about the Pali work, and to briefly describe the inspection/ acceptance process when a contractor repaves any stretch of road under the department’s jurisdiction. Shelly Kunishige, a DOT spokeswoman, emailed the response:
“The Pali Highway repaving between Kamehameha Highway and Waokanaka Street is ongoing. The surface the public is driving over in the town-bound lanes is not the final driving surface, so there are variations in the heights of the pavement layers as we build up to the final pavement layer. Once the final pavement layer is put in, the roadway will be level.
“In general, when we repave or reconstruct a roadway, we start off by milling the roadway (removing the top layers) and building the supporting layers up. This sequencing allows for longer stretches of continuous pavement and a smoother final roadway when complete. HDOT inspectors check for the following during asphalt paving: 1) suitable base course; 2) asphalt mix is correct; 3) correct thickness of asphalt; 4) correct paving equipment is being used; 5) the asphalt mix is being heated to the correct temperature; 6) proper compaction of the asphalt; and, 7) pavement is rolled and even before opening to traffic (note, there will be level changes between paving courses). Between each pavement layer, pavement smoothness is checked through a combination of checking joints and other areas with a straight edge, visual inspection, and by driving over the surface.
“When driving at the posted speed limit, the level changes should not pose a safety concern to motorists. If a motorist encounters an unsafe condition on a state roadway, we recommend he/she report it to our maintenance hot line at 831-6714 or MSWClerk@hawaii.gov.”
Q: It’s wonderful that Pali Highway is now open. Is the Pali Lookout open also?
A: No, not yet. “Despite the reopening of Pali Highway, the Nu‘uanu Pali State Wayside lookout remains closed,” according to the Department of Land and Natural Resources’ Division of State Parks.
We emailed a spokesman, seeking an expected reopening date for the scenic overlook, but didn’t hear back by deadline.
Since Sept. 1, Pali Highway has been open in both directions Sundays through Fridays from 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. (closed Saturdays and overnight).
The lookout has been closed since February, when landslides damaged the highway; the highway was initially closed during the emergency repairs but later was opened to contra-flow traffic for limited hours before the broader access began this month.
Responding to Friday’s column (808ne.ws/96kline), readers told of food they couldn’t get through airport security: kulolo, raw veggie pita sandwiches, supposedly frozen butter, Jello shots — OK, that last one seems obvious. Other readers chastised us for not emphasizing that the TSA’s whole 3-1-1 rule — not just the container size — applies to food in liquid or gel form in carry-on luggage. The 3-1-1 rule means that liquids and gels must be in 3.4-ounce (100 ml) containers or smaller; placed together inside a single, quart-size Ziploc-style bag; one Ziploc bag per passenger.
Mahalo to Mike for helping me to my feet when I slipped on papaya on the sidewalk in Kailua. — Grateful senior citizen
Write to Kokua Line at Honolulu Star-Advertiser, 7 Waterfront Plaza, Suite 210, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., Honolulu 96813; call 529-4773; fax 529-4750; or email email@example.com.