Fixing Kuhio Highway will be costly and complicated, but may provide impetus for a long-term plan limiting daily visitors in the area.
Kauai County had already cracked down on hundreds of remote visitor rentals. The flood might have doomed many more.
Kauai has historically allowed development along rivers and in coastal areas vulnerable to flooding.
The state’s detailed assessment of damage includes destroyed homes and roads, lost tourism dollars and PTSD among residents.
The storm’s toll in Hanalei and more remote areas includes destroyed homes, lost jobs and vanished tourist dollars.
Take a look at the first Google satellite imagery capturing the extent of the flooding, road damage and altered beachscapes.
A joint conference committee passed the overall budget bill ahead of schedule to fast-track funding for areas hit by flooding.
UPDATED: Officials expect to reopen one lane for emergency access on the damaged Kuhio Highway by May 7.
The rain-laden system was hard to track because it wasn’t large-scale, like a tropical storm. And Hawaii weather is just hard to predict.