The Hawaii Tourism Authority is dealing with the visitor impact on the Hana Road
HONOLULU (KHON2) – The scenic road to Hana, officially known as the Hana Highway, has long been a draw for visitors to Maui. But it is also an important road for East Maui residents who rely on its accessibility in their daily lives.
Now, with fewer travel restrictions, more tourists are returning to the islands, leaving residents with a traffic congestion problem on the long, winding road.
To help alleviate the situation for Hana residents, the Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) is actively working with Maui County officials and other state agencies to provide solutions.
The ongoing effort is published under the HTA’s Maui Nui Destination Management Action Plan, along with proposed solutions to the problems facing the Maui tourism industry. According to the HTA, the plan aims to rebuild, redefine and redefine the direction of tourism over a period of three years.
“We take seriously the concerns of residents of Hana and East Maui about the impact of visitors in their community, especially along this major thoroughfare they rely on, and are committed to addressing them with workable solutions,” said John De Fries. President and CEO of the Hawaii Tourism Authority.
Some of the measures in the plan address issues such as:
- Combating illegal rentals
- Train visitors
- Two-way communication and collaboration with industry
- Solution of transport problems and infrastructure
As for the road to Hana, one of the solutions proposed by HTA to end the overcrowding is to encourage visitors to join a tour from an approved travel company rather than drive themselves.
HTA has published a list of tour operators with trips to Hana here.
Government agencies are also involved.
On June 10, the Hawaiian Department of Transportation announced that it had installed approximately 70 âno parking signsâ on Hana Highway warning drivers of a $ 35 fine and a $ 200 surcharge for illegally stopping on a federal highway . Ten of the signs were installed in popular locations such as: Waikamoi Stream Bridge, Twin Falls, Bamboo Forest, Ching’s Pond, Waikalani Bridge, Puaa Kaa Park and Hanawi Bridge.
According to the office of Maui Mayor Michael Victorino, the Maui Police Department issued 389 parking bans and 83 warnings to offenders on the Hana Highway between Haiku and the city of Hana between June 1 and 23.
Visit the HTA website for more information.