Multi-agency effort to address health and safety concerns under Nimitz Highway ViaductPosted on Oct 13, 2017 in Main, News
HONOLULU – The Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) is coordinating with the state Office of the Homeless Coordinator, the Department of the Attorney General, the Department of Public Safety (PSD), Sheriffs Division, the HDOT Harbors Police, the Department of Land and Natural Resources, the City & County of Honolulu, the Honolulu Police Department, the Hawaiian Humane Society and various outreach providers to address health and safety concerns under the Nimitz Highway Viaduct from the vicinity of the Moanalua Bridge to the viaduct off-ramp to Kamehameha/Nimitz Highway.
This is a continuation of HDOT’s pilot program to prioritize cleanups along the H-1 corridor and along Nimitz Highway that began in July 2017. HDOT began working with the Office of the Homeless Coordinator and PSD for regular outreach and trespassing enforcement along these critical corridors to analyze and review procedures for outreach, notice, and disposition of unattended and/or unauthorized property. As a result of these operations, 62 individuals have been placed in supportive housing.
Funding for the cleanup operations is provided through the pilot program made possible through a $2 million appropriation from the State Legislature and $2 million in matching funds from HDOT. HDOT has contracted HTM Contractors Inc. to clean the area and sort, haul and store items left behind.
“Addressing the situation under the Nimitz viaduct requires a collaborative effort by State and City agencies, non-governmental agencies, and service providers,” said Gov. David Ige. “We’re ever mindful that to address the issue, we need to make services and supportive housing available to homeless individuals and families residing on state lands.”
The Office of the Homeless Coordinator, PSD, and contracted service organizations will begin providing advance notice and outreach on available services on Monday, Oct. 16, 2017. Cleanup of the area under the Nimitz Highway Viaduct, including waterways, is scheduled to begin Oct. 23 and continue through Nov. 17. Once areas are cleaned up, they will be fenced off, monitored through 24-hour security, and used for construction storage.
State law (HRS 264-6) prohibits the placement or storage of structures, vehicles, equipment, or other objects within the state highway right-of-way without HDOT’s permission. Any property remaining in the highway area unattended without authorization for a continuous period of at least 24 hours will be considered to be abandoned and will be stored for a minimum of 30 days. Any such property may also be handled by the State of Hawaii pursuant to HRS 171-31.5.
State law (HRS 708-814) also provides the owner of unimproved or unused lands the authority to request an individual entering or remaining unlawfully in or upon said lands to leave given reasonable warning or notice.
No lane closures on Nimitz Highway will be necessary for the multi-agency effort.