Tuesday, September 02, 2014 596-SURF , 596-WAVE , 922-BONG , 638-RUSH , 572-SURF(MAUI) , 241-SURF (KAUAI) , 324-RUSH (BIG ISLAND)
   
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A message from Ron Iwami, President Friends of Kewalos

 


I was born on Maui and raised in Honolulu in Manoa Valley.  From a very young age I was drawn to the ocean ever since my parents took me and my brother and sister to San Souci Beach with its brilliant white sand and crystal clear water.  Today, thousands of people including my son and daughter live the “ocean lifestyle” for sustenance and pure enjoyment.  Here in Hawaii, we are all tied to the land and the ocean in our own special way, just as much a part of us as we are of it. For this reason, we all need to protect the last remaining shoreline areas of the State to ensure that this lifestyle is perpetuated for the sake of who we are to become as a People.
 
That is why I am saddened by the direction that OHA is taking in the development plans for Kaka‘ako Makai, the land that was given to them by the State to satisfy their long standing debt.  This last public oceanfront land in Honolulu was being protected from becoming another Waikiki by a law banning residential development enacted in 2006 due to a huge public outcry to the sale of public land to build luxury residential high-rises.  
 
OHA has requested the legislature to pass a bill asking for an exception to the residential ban so they can move forward on their plans to get the “highest and best use” for the land by including a residential component to their upcoming master plan. However, with the lack of a detailed plan depicting which parcels will comprise of residences, how high the towers will rise, to be sold or leased at affordable or market rates, and other important details, it is hard to determine what their true intentions are and how it will impact the surrounding businesses and parks.  I can say with high degree of certainty that they want to go high because the bill is asking to increase the 200 foot height limit and raise it to 400 feet.  In addition, at a recent public hearing a legislator asked OHA if they plan to build affordable units.  OHA replied without hesitation that they were not planning to build any affordable units.  This tells me that they intend to build for the upper class. Only the select few who have the means to buy into these units will be able to enjoy this land. The money will soon run dry but the towers will remain as a sad reminder of what took place. 
 
Do we not want our keiki to know that we live in society that values the land and ocean and all its splendor just as much as we value the almighty dollar?
 
Another important note is that if the exception is granted, it will allow the other landowners, such as Kamehameha Schools, to ask for exceptions too.  At that point it would be hard to deny the exception because it would not be fair to allow one special interest and not another.  In addition, OHA could ask to build residential on additional parcels in the future. Before you know it, the residential ban that is protecting this land would be no more.  
 
One may ask, if residential is not allowed what will become of the land? The answer can be found in the Kaka‘ako Makai Conceptual Master Plan that was adopted by HCDA in 2011, (one year before that land was given to OHA) to guide all future development for the area.  This plan was the result of five years of hard work by the stakeholders that surfaced during the controversy in 2006, including OHA, HCDA, KS, community groups and the general public.   Along with this effort the State paid $600,000 for a consultant to facilitate the planning of this KM Master Plan.  This plan created by the PEOPLE does not include any residential component.
 
In the 1960’s, there was a plan to expand Magic Island towards Kewalo Basin, destroying many surf sites, to build a major resort development.  Save Our Surf had the foresight to see the major negative impacts of this proposed plan and rallied the People  and stopped it.  Today, thousands of people us it daily. 
This same vision and foresight should be applied to what is going on in KM.                  
 
As the thirty residential high-rises and its 30,000 future residents come to Kaka‘ako Mauka it becomes more imperative to keep the makai lands residential free to be enjoyed by all the people of Hawaii.
 
I implore to the legislature to stand by the law established to protect this land.  Both the law and the KM master plan were created by tremendous effort of the People.  Please honor both.  By honoring them you honor the People.
 
Aloha,
 
Ron Iwami, President
Friends of Kewalos


 

Aloha Friends, 

 

Just wanted to share my editorial with all of you in case any of you are planning to write one too.

No conference meeting has been scheduled yet, but you can let the conferees know how you feel.   Even a simple "please do NOT pass sb3122" is an effective message.

Here are the contact info of all conferees for SB3122:

 

Senators

 

Senator Maile S.L. Shimabukuro
Hawaii State Capitol, Room 222
Phone 808-586-7793
Fax 808-586-7797
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 
Senator Donovan M. Dela Cruz
Hawaii State Capitol, Room 202
Phone 808-586-6090
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 
Senator Clayton Hee
Hawaii State Capitol, Room 407
Phone 808-586-7330
Fax 808-586-7334
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 
Senator Brickwood Galuteria
Hawaii State Capitol, Room 221
Phone 808-586-6740
Fax 808-586-6829
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 
Senator Sam Slom
Hawaii State Capitol, Room 214
Phone 808-586-8420
Fax 808-586-8426
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 

 

Representatives

Representative Cindy Evans
Hawaii State Capitol, Room 425
Phone 808-586-8510
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it


Representative Faye P. Hanohano
Hawaii State Capitol, Room 418
Phone 808-586-6530
Fax 808-586-6531
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 
Representative Sylvia Luke
Hawaii State Capitol, Room 306
Phone 808-586-6200
Fax 808-586-6201
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 
Representative Chris Lee
Hawaii State Capitol, Room 436
Phone 808-586-9450
Fax 808-586-9456
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 
Representative Richard Lee Fale
Hawaii State Capitol, Room 319
Phone 808-586-6380
Fax 808-586-6381
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it


Aloha Friends, 

Just wanted to share my editorial with all of you in case any of you are planning to write one too.

No conference meeting has been scheduled yet, but you can let the conferees know how you feel.   Even a simple "please do NOT pass sb3122" is an effective message.

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