East Hawaii News

Bidding Scheduled for Cemetery Road Restoration

August 7, 2015, 8:32 AM HST
* Updated October 2, 3:31 PM
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From a functioning roadway to a tourist attraction, Cemetery Road in Pahoa will once again be changed. This time, it will be restored to its initial function.

Almost 10 months have passed since the June 27 lava flow initially crossed Cemetery Road in Pahoa and the Hawai’i County Department of Public Works thinks it’s time to open bidding for the restoration of the roadway.

After weeks of threatening the area, lava crossed onto Cemetery Road, that extends from Apa’a Street near the Pahoa Transfer Station, on October 25.

Bidding on the project will open on Sept. 10 and will go through the county’s procurement process, according to DPW spokesperson Barett Otani.

Otani told Big Island Now that the decision to restore the road followed the assessment of accessibility for communities in the area, including Kaohe Homestead. Otani says that “restoring the functionality of Cemetery Road was in the best interests of public safety.”

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The project is estimated to cost $200,000 with 75 percent of the construction cost coming from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

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Otani says the work is expect to take about 40 days to complete and will include removing the newest lava to original grades and paving the roadway fresh. There are about 3,500 cubic yards of rock that will be removed in the process.

Work on the 500-foot stretch of roadway is set to begin in Oct. 2015, just one year after the lava coated the road and threatened the community.

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