The tramway leading up to the Koko Head summit will be closed from June 15 through the end of July as workers repair “deficient structures” at the top that pose a public safety risk, the city said in a news release on Monday.
The long-troubled tramway itself though will not be included in this repair project, the city said.
“The City and County of Honolulu is in the early planning stages of exploring options for tramway improvements,” the Department of Parks and Recreation said in the release. “This is a long-term effort and we greatly appreciate the patience and understanding from the public during this process.”
Visitors to Koko Head Trail hike over 1,000 steps over old tramway tracks that have fallen into disrepair.
Courtesy of Jane Howard
Structures atop Koko Head were constructed by the military in 1942 and previously served as a radar station, according to the parks department. In 1947, the station was turned over to the Air Force and then to the City and County of Honolulu in 1966 when it was deactivated.
“Since its formal deactivation the installation has degraded severely,” the department said. “To date, portions of the former installation remain, many of which pose a significant safety concern.”
Workers will remove debris from tunnels and shafts; seal the shafts, vents and tunnels; removed deteriorated steel decking and framing; and install signs at the summit and tramway trestle to warn visitors of the conditions.
Work hours are scheduled from 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and will include the use of a helicopter for transporting materials to the summit, the department said. This may impact operating hours at the Koko Head Shooting Complex.
The contract of just over $439,000 was awarded to Kaikor Construction Company, Inc., the department said. It comes out of $1 million the city budgeted last year for Koko Head improvements. Of that, $100,000 was earmarked for “immediate repairs and maintenance of Koko Head Stairs,” but the money hasn’t been spent yet, parks spokesman Nate Serota said.
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