LIHU`E, KAUA`I (Ben Caxton) — The Hawaii Department of Transportation says repairs on Kuhio Highway are continuing. In a statement issued Wednesday HDOT notes that “considerable progress” has been made since more than 50″ of rain caused severe damage along the north coast of Kaua`i April 14 and 15th of 2018. Despite the state and county’s best efforts to repair the widespread damage as quickly as possible, HDOT said that on-going weather and environmental challenges, permit issuance procedures, and production rates combined with the need to accommodate traffic through the construction areas have led to the delays in the project’s original schedule. They say that slope stabilization and roadway repairs between Waikoko and Wainiha will be substantially complete in April 2019. Once that’s done though there will still be traffic delays due to construction to complete the renovations to the Waioli, Waipa and Waikoko Bridges. Weather permitting that work is now expected to be completed in May. Total cost for the Kuhio Highway Emergency Repairs is estimated at $77.2 million. In addition to devasting damage to Kuhio Highway, there was also extensive damage to Haena State Park and Napali Coast State Wilderness Park, both of which remain closed to visitors. In the meantime, the convoy between Wainiha and Waikoko will continue to operate until such time as HDOT determines that it is safe to allow access without it. Last week, Mayor Kawakami extended the County’s Emergency Proclamation and Emergency Rule prohibiting transient vacation rentals in the area and limiting access to local residents and project workers through the first week of March.