October 2019 Update
The Leeward Bikeway will be transformative to lives of thousands that live, work, and play in Leeward Oahu by providing them a safe biking and walking path. HBL and thousands of advocates have been pushing for implementation as soon as possible. It’s been a long journey – planned since 1977 and since 2014 it’s been HBL’s #1 advocacy priority and we’ve dedicated tons of outreach to build what is now very solid community support. We’re happy to say that it is moving close to reality!
On 10/10/19, the Hawaii Department issued a request for bidders to construct the Leeward Bikeway from Waipahu Depot Rd to Philippine Sea Rd. This a major milestone. HDOT should have a construction contractor on board by February/March 2020 and construction should begin soon after. Construction is anticipated to take 1 year (it includes building two new bridges), so hopefully we’ll be riding it by early 2021. Yes, this is still a ways off, but we are getting closer to it becoming a reality.
The Leeward Bikeway Phase I will link with the existing Pearl Harbor Bike Path and West Loch Shoreline Path to create an over 10-mile continuous multi-use path from Ewa to Halawa.
The next phase our advocacy efforts is to push for Phase II of the Leeward Bikeway to extend the multi-use path west all the way to Nanakuli.
Read more about the Leeward Bikeway and put your name down on a list of supporters at HBL.org/leewardbikeway/.
July 2019 Update
Major Milestone – On 6/24/19, the National Historic Preservation Act Section 106 process was finalized for the Leeward Bikeway. This federal law and regulatory process is designed to protect historic resource and had held up the Leeward Bikeway for years. The final solution is that Leeward Bikeway project will include frequent interpretative signs that narrate the history of the Oahu Rail & Land rail and surrounding areas, the two new bridges are designed to evoke the historic bridges that they are replacing, among other things. It’s completion is a major milestone and should clear the way for the Leeward Bikeway to move forward.
December 2018 Update
Focus on Phase I – The Hawaii Department of Transportation made the decision to make Phase I a separate project from Phase II. Phase I extends from the end of the Pearl Harbor Bike Path at Waipahu Depot Road to Philippine Sea Road in Ewa (by the Hawaiian Railway Society) – see map below.
Milestones – In June 2018, HDOT published the Final Environmental Assessment for project (link) – this is a major milestone that includes with it the completion of a large portion of the regulatory requirements. As of December 2018, the National Historic Preservation Act Section 106 process (a law and process intended to protect historic priorities) is still outstanding. HBL is an official participant in the Section 106 and we are cautiously optimistic that process will conclude in the next 1-2 months. After completion of this, the Leeward Bikeway Phase I should go to bid and then construction in 6-12 months.
What about Phase II – In separating out Phase II from the Phase I, HDOT has announced that they are deferring implementation of the Phase II section for the foreseeable future. The reasons provided for deferring Phase II are that there are long sections of Phase II where existing utility poles need to either be moved or additional land is needed for the path to avoid them, which would require a lengthy and potentially costly land acquisition process or significantly increase the project cost for relocating utilities. HDOT also says the pre-utility issue project cost estimate of $13M is funding they do not have and based on current funding levels won’t have in future years. Phase II extends from Philippine Sea Road in Ewa (by the Hawaiian Railway Society) and Lualualei Naval Road in Nanakuli – see map below.
Continuing to Advocate for Phase II – We’re not giving up on the full Leeward Bikeway! We plan to continue to organize and advocate – we already have the support of the Nanakuli/Maili and Kapolei Neighborhood Boards, the neighborhoods Phase II will serve. We’ll be reaching out to the area legislators to request their support. We will need your support in this! Please make sure you’re on the list of Leeward Bikeway Supporters so you’ll receive our calls when action is needed.
More info on the Leeward Bikeway – See the Vision! – Click here for our page that provides you extensive information on the Leeward Bikeway.