North Shore Outdoor Circle Updates
Aloha from the North Shore Outdoor Circle branch. We have been incredibly busy this first half of 2016, with field trips, presentations, workshops, attempting to protect our precious view planes, and fundraisers. Just to update you on the final two issues, here are the details.
The Shops at Anahulu
This proposed development at Loko ‘Ea Fishpond was brought to our attention in September 2015. In October, the NSOC Board voted to support the use of land around Loko ’Ea Fishpond as a cultural and educational site for the community as well as protection of scenic views as stated in the North Shore Sustainable Communities Plan.
NSSCP-Panoramic views throughout the region are identified on the Open Space Map. The significant scenic views that should be protected and enhanced include the following: Mauka views along Kamehameha Highway of Anahulu Stream and Loko ‘Ea Fishpond.
We urged the landowner, Queen Liliuokalani Trust (QLT), to conserve the land, protect the view plane of Loko ’Ea Fishpond from Kamehameha Highway and cancel plans for a retail development. We presented information to officials of QLT on possible ways they could conserve the land without losing the revenue they need for their mission. We have made our position clear to the community, to QLT and to our elected officials. However, QLT continues to state that they want to go forward with the planned retail development despite opposition from many members of the community. This is very disappointing.
On April 19, 2016, the Department of Planning and Permitting (DPP) held a hearing in Haleiwa to receive community input on the proposed developer’s request for a Special Management Area Use Permit. Testimony was mostly opposed to the development and was finally cut off after three hours. Over a dozen more people submitted written testimony opposing the permit. Shortly thereafter, DPP submitted a report acknowledging the concerns about the view-shed encroachment, the cultural sensitivity of the location and the potential impacts on the environment; but they recommended that the permit be approved anyway.
The Chevron station that was demolished on this site in 2008 left substantial soil contamination. Chevron has still not completed remediation of the damage and is still paying ground rent to QLT. The State Health Department must sign off on the completion of soil remediation before any construction can take place at this site. We were disappointed that approval of this permit was passed by the City Council at its meeting on July 6th.
To date the NSOC role has been to advocate for preservation of the open space and view plane and to facilitate discussion between the landowner, surrounding landowners and developer in the hope of a win-win alternative for land conservation. With the help of Council Chair Ernie Martin, we were able to bring all parties to a meeting on Thursday, June 2nd with the North Shore Community Land Trust to discuss how land conservation could meet the financial needs of QLT. However, officials of QLT were still not willing to consider alternatives to their planned retail development.
NSOC now must decide what further steps we should take to continue to pursue our goal of conserving this open space and view plane in such a significant historic location.
Haleiwa Special District Amendment
Since 1984 Haleiwa has been designated as a Special District in the Land Use Ordinance of the City and County of Honolulu in order to preserve its unique and historic character. We support the efforts of Council Chair Ernie Martin to make amendments to the Ordinance to better regulate the proliferation of food trucks in the Haleiwa Special District. The proposed amendments to the Haleiwa Special District Ordinance have been introduced at City Council as Resolution 16-42.
We have also recommended further revisions:
(1) Require that any signs posted on food trucks be permitted under the city sign ordinance like any other commercial sign.
(2) Prohibit food trucks from parking in locations that block the view of mountain, ocean or historic sites listed in the Haleiwa Town Historic walking tour brochure.
(3) Put limitations on advertising signs displayed on vehicles parked in public beach parking stalls.
We feel that these changes will help accomplish our goals to control sign clutter and protect important view planes.
North Shore Branch
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