The Hawaii Department of Transportation has announced that both lanes of Kuhio Highway at Hanalei Hill are now fully open — 24 hours, 7 days a week.
In March 2021, a major landslide came down on Hanalei Hill, immediately closing both lanes of the highway and blocking Hanalei, Wainiha and Haena from the rest of the island. Until now, cars and buses were able to drive in and out of the North Shore through one or two open lanes on the highway, depending on an access schedule to coordinate travel with emergency road clearing and reconstruction of Hanalei Hill.
Since March, landslide response and emergency work has included the installation of over 500 soil nails as a preventive measure in improving slope stability, road reconstruction and resurfacing, and clearing over 80,000 tons of debris. This first phase of construction also involved concrete work to stabilize a drainage tunnel located midslope. The second phase of the project, currently in the design stage, is anticipated to begin in early 2022. Phase two work will focus on further stabilization of the lower portion of the slope, hillside drainage improvements, as well as safety and sustainability efforts to protect residents and restore the area landscape.