The Hawaiʻi Department of Transportation (HDOT) is currently installing nearly 30,000 linear feet of dust screen for the protection of highway users on Honoapiʻilani Highway (Route 30) and the Lāhainā Bypass (Route 3000).
The Bypass road connects Kahului Airport, Kihei, and other main regions in Maui with the resort area after passing the destroyed city of Lahaina.
If this fence is also meant to block any view of the town of Lahaina seems to be logical. Currently, hotels and resorts in Kaanapali house many of the displaced survivors, and emergency crews.
The work started on August 16, with Maui-based contractors teaming up for the massive project that should take about a month to complete. The teams are constructing a fence that will stretch more than 5 miles.
On Monday, August 21, HDOT was informed of $3 million in quick-release Emergency Relief (ER) funding from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) for necessary work like this to maintain safe access to West Maui. Building the screen is estimated to cost $2.4 million.
Federal, State, Maui County, and volunteer agencies continue recovery actions in Lāhāina. The dust screens will not interfere with those efforts.
The dust screens will be maintained by HDOT crews and will remain up until further notice.
The County of Maui has limited access to Honoapiʻilani Highway between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. to West Maui residents, first responders, and those working in West Maui. All motorists may enter from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.