Maui Discussion

Ask the Mayor: Who Decides Which Roads Get Repaved?

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Mayor Alan Arakawa answers some of the questions submitted to his staff. Questions submitted will be considered for inclusion in the “Ask the Mayor” column. Submit your own questions about County of Maui programs, services, operations or policies to Mayor Alan Arakawa at (808) 270-7855,  [email protected]  or mail them to 200 S. High St., 9th Floor, Wailuku, HI 96793.


Q: I would like to know who makes the decision of which roads need resurfacing in priority order.

I drive Hāna Highway daily from the Ha‘ikū turnoff to town. The past month, they have been resurfacing Hāna Highway from Pā‘ia going west.

To me, Hāna Highway was fine; I guess it is because in comparison, the three miles of Kokomo Road from Mile Marker 3 to Ha‘ikū Cannery that I drive has never completed.


This portion of the road is ten times worse than Hāna Highway was. Seems like priorities are backwards.


A: The priorities you mention are not so much backwards, as they are separated between state and county.

The state’s repaving of Hāna Highway is being done in accordance with its own priorities, objectives and funding.

As for the county, our pavement management program determines the condition of the road using a rating matrix based on the severity and extent of five types of deterioration: transverse cracking, alligator cracking, longitudinal cracking, patching, potholes and edge cracking.


Please note, however, that the pavement management program is used as a guide and other factors are involved in the county’s decisions on any roadwork.

The Kokomo Road project is a county project that is utilizing federal funding so a full, long-lasting road reconstruction can be completed.

As you are probably aware, that road is so long that financial constraints prevented it from being reconstructed all at once—so it was broken up into various sections.

Our County of Maui Department of Public Works’ Engineering Division is moving forward with plans to complete Kokomo Road by mid-2018.

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