Following a review of project activities shared by Thirty Meter Telescope International Observatory (TIO) with the University of Hawaiʻi, UH notified the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) on April 28, 2021, that work/construction on the TMT project was initiated in 2019 based on project activities in June and July of that year. DLNR has confirmed that this requirement has been satisfied.
This notification to DLNR is required by the Conservation District Use Permit issued by the Board of Land and Natural Resources in September 2017. The project activities in June and July of 2019 included removal of unpermitted structures; onsite GPS verification of locations and coordinates; construction kick-off meeting with civil contractor and subcontractors to review procedures, safety protocols and other related items; locating and surveying onsite underground fiber optic and electrical lines; inspections of TIO construction equipment for invasive species; and the mobilization of 18 vehicles and equipment to the worksite.
The mobilization of vehicles and equipment in July 2019 was blocked for several months by opponents of the project. The work was unable to continue due to factors beyond the control of UH and the project. Future activity has not been announced by TIO.