Federal Grant to Go for Database for Road Work

Thu July 26, 2012 - West Edition

Palm trees on the Hawaiian island of Oahu.
Palm trees on the Hawaiian island of Oahu.

HONOLULU (AP) Traffic officials will be using a federal grant to develop a high-resolution image database of Oahu to help determine where to best use road repair and maintenance resources.

Honolulu Mayor Peter Carlisle announced July 6 that a $1.05 million grant to the city will be used for a so-called Pavement Management System database. The database also will be used to develop recommendations for rehabilitation and reconstruction of city roadways.

The city is contracting with Sam O. Hirota Inc., a local surveying and construction consulting company, to use a car equipped with mobile 3-D mapping technology to establish the database, the Honolulu Star Advertiser reported.

“Our goals are to make good roads last longer and stop potholes before they even start and to make sure bad roads are identified early and schedule for proper repairs,” Carlisle told the newspaper.

The technology was developed with the help of NASA and captures high-resolution 3-D images at normal driving speed, said Dennis Hirota, the company’s president.

The technology is similar to street-mapping camera systems used by Google, and is being used in only a dozen locations around the world, Hirota said.

A complete survey of Oahu roads is expected to be completed by the end of the year, he said.