POSTED: 12 APRIL 2007 - 8:00am HST

Alignment of Wailua Bridge Addition

alignment drawing by Juan Wilson from Scheme 2 by Scott Wylie and suggestion from Jonathan Jay

by Juan Wilson on 12 April 2007

Above is a plan derived from Scheme II as described below, and earlier sugggestions by Jonathan Jay for a bike route over the Wailua River. This is clearly the the best end result for both the future highway widening and the separation of the bike/pedestrian river crossing.It is also a superior solution to phasing the construction with the least interuption of traffic flow.

The next issue to deal with is the engineering. I am not a civil or structural engineer, although I have worked on bridge abuttment design. The first and perhaps most challenging engineering aspect I see is the north abuttment of the new two lane bridge. It is so close to the other structures that shoring their abuttments will be an engineering challenge.

It is my opinion that the pre-existing south abuttment is less of a problem, in that there is significantly more room to work there. If the existing abuttment is sufficient for the bridge load it can be reused, otherwise it can be replaced.




POSTED: 7 APRIL 2007 - 8:00pm HST

Environmental Designer proposes schemes

View from theoceaside of the north bank of the Wailua Rivertowards the Cane Haul Bridge

by Scott Wylie on 7 April 2007 Revision 2.0-070412

My name is Scott Wylie and I am an environmental designer in Oregon.

My wife and I stay each year at Mokihana (Kapa'a-Waipouli) for about 4 weeks and enjoy its simplicity, comparative to most of the other timeshares and condominiums around. While we are working on simplifying our lives here in Oregon, the simpler lives we live during our time in Kauai is helping to inspire us to understanding the joys of sustainable existence.

Besides being an environmental designer I am a historic preservationist and a Kauaiian timeshare guest of I I years counting so I've been coming to Kauai long enough to see and grieve many of the changes that are starting to spark lots of press, now.

I found out about the proposed widening of Wailua Sugar Cane Haul Bridge in The Garden Island, 3/13. In my years as a guest in Waipouli, I've become very familiar with the progressive severity of the Wailua/Waipouli/Kapaa congestion problem.

The material attached here is something I prepared in response to the 3/13 TGI article. I mailed copies of this material to the Department of Transportation Highway Planning Division, Office of Environmental Quality Control and Kimura International (K.I., whomever this material concerned). I thought this would interest you.

I feel this problem is caused at least as much by the street intersections/traffic controls flanking Coco Palms and the constriction of the Kuhio Highway right of way through built-up Wailua as the bridges cause it. While I do feel the bridges certainly are worth addressing, [and that is what I wish to speak to, presently] I do not think there will be much relief until the other causes are also worked on. I feel the bridge traffic handling capacity can be increased without any highway closure.

I also feel strongly that Sugar Cane Haul Bridge (SCHB) is historically and architecturally significant and that changes to it be minimized while continuing to use it far into the future. I enjoy driving on it whenever I travel from the south; its immediacy to the ocean's beauty and its single lane scale are a picturesque and refreshing highlight of my ride.

SCHB has great architectural and sculptural interest from below and I'm positive that the beachgoers and canoeists appreciate this. A couple of years ago the SCHB road surface was redone and the railings were upgraded so it appears to me that the bridge is valued as a continuingly viable part of Kauai's highway system.

Here are 2 proposals that are alternatives to the widening of Sugar Cane Haul Bridge.

The existing single lane sugar cane haul bridge over the Wailua River. Scheme I proposes outboard bike path.

Schematic I: Build a second single lane bridge for northbound traffic.

Position a new 1-lane bridge in the space that exists between the present bridges. The piers supporting the existing bridges align upstream/downstream with one another. Align the new bridge piers with the existing ones. Both anchorages of a long- vanished single lane bridge still exist close to the 2-lane Wailua Bridge. The southerly anchorage can be reactivated and the northerly one expanded/reactivated. As a historic interest note, on the south anchorage still sit remnants of the former concrete bridge rail and ornamental gateway obelisks. These obelisks can be salvaged and re-installed as gateway sentinels on the new bridge as a remembrance of the old bridge. In connection with using the old south anchorage as the exclusive basis for supporting this end of the bridge, the merits of doing this might need to be weighed with the possible repositioning or redesign of a large power pole near the south bank.Continue to use the SCHB as a one lane northbound vehicular crossing. Build the bike and pedestrian path seawards of SCHB supporting it with an outrigger system attached and architecturally sympathetic to SCHB. Or construct a separate bike and pedestrian bridge, also seawards of SCHB. If the latter idea is adopted, align the new piers with those of SCHB.

Abuttment between the SCHB and main highway bridge to be used for new two lane highway bridge in Scheme II

Schematic 2: Build a northbound 2-lane bridge between existing bridges

The Main Wailua Bridge is two lanes and is used a one-way southbound in the morning and becomes a two-way during the rest of the day and night. Proposal is to build a northbound 2-lane bridge between SCHB and the existing 2-lane bridge. Convert the present 2-lane bridge to an exclusively southbound one. As with Proposal 1, salvage the obelisks and reinstate them as gateway sentinels at the south end of the new bridge. Convert Sugar Cane Haul Bridge to bicycle and pedestrian use.

Scott Wylie
phone: (541) 285-3885

Note from Juan Wilson:
My opinion as an architect-planner, shared with the designer Jonathan Jay of the Kauai Bike Network, is that Schematic II is the superior solution to the future of the highway. It preserves the historic architectural value of the SCHB and also separates the pedestrian-bikepath from fumes, noise and differential speed of nearby vehicular traffic that is a part of Schmatic I.
We both deeply thank Scott Wylie for taking the time to share his expertese with us. Mahalo.


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