Crews Replenish Sand Along Eroding Kailua Beach

Published On: Mar 19 2012 02:09:39 AM HST   Updated On: Mar 20 2012 07:36:08 AM HST

Parts of Kailua Beach were closed off on Monday. It's the start of a five-day project that will allow city crews to scoop sand built up around Kaelepulu Stream to replenish the shoreline.

Kailua resident Brian Easterling and his friends remember a very different scene along Kailua's beaches.

"It used to be easy to walk from one side of Lanikai to the other. That changed pretty quickly, sand bags started popping up, sandgrabbers started popping up and you started seeing the sea walls," Easterling said.

City officials have noticed that typical sand build up during winter months have declined but the city couldn't start replenishing the shoreline until tides were at its lowest point which happens in February and March.

Parks and Recreation Director Gary Cabato has been overseeing the development of the project over the past year.

"It really depends on the tidal change because the worst the tide becomes, or the more volatile the tide is, then the sand will erode even faster, so we hope this avoids that erosion," Cabato said.

Many tourists walking up to the beach were unaware of the temporary closure. John Crowe is visiting the islands from Canada this week and said this isn't how they imagined spending their spring vacation in Hawaii.

"It's an inconvenience. You gotta walk your family a little farther now, not quite what we expected," Crowe said.

For Brian Easterling, he said he doesn't mind the temporary closure if it means a better outcome in the long run.

"It's a beautiful place and everyone should be able to appreciate the beauty of Kailua Beach," Easterling said.

City crews were set to start replenishing sand two weeks ago but stormy weather swept in loads of debris that had to be cleared first.


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