Governor Releases Funds for Completion of Hilo Airport Cargo Facility
Gov. Neil Abercrombie has released $14 million in airport revenue bonds to complete a capital improvement project at the Hilo International Airport.
Construction of the combination cargo building and light industrial facility originally began in December 2008, but the project was reduced in scope because of a lack of funding.
“We became aware that only part of the project was complete – the cargo building was missing,” Abercrombie said. “Based on input from agency officials and community leaders, it is clear that this cargo building is needed to make the freight process more effective for the Big Island community.”
“With all the unemployed construction workers around Hilo, it is unacceptable for a project of this size not to be completed,” said Sen. Gilbert Kahele, who worked with the state Department of Transportation to obtain additional funds from the state Legislature.
The original project put out to bid in 2008 included a cargo building, parking lot, airfield apron and taxiway. In June 2009, the project was reduced, leaving the project incomplete.
According to a statement from the governor’s office, over the past year, DOT officials sought to complete the project by negotiating with the original contractor rather than rebidding the work, which would save the state several hundred thousand dollars.
The airport cargo building houses tenants of cargo transport companies and freight forwarders, as well as government agencies that oversee freight activities.