Chinatown merchants battle for restroomsUPDATED 11:26 PM HST Jan 29, 2014Video Transcript
The battle over building restrooms in Chinatown is surfacing again. Local business owners say having those facilities readily available is critical to their success. And now the City is taking action. KITV4's Brenton Awa reports. 01 14 Finding a public restroom in Chinatown is downright impossible... There's none. Chu Lan Shubert-Kwock has been pushing the city to install them -- to help boost tourism -- and provide relief for shoppers -- seniors -- and residents. 105 "ALL OF US LOOK TO THE CITY TO PROVIDE A VERY BASIC NECESSITY IN CHINATOWN AND IF WE'RE GOING TO GROW OUR BUSINESSES IN CHINATOWN, THAT'S ONE BASIC NEED WE NEED TO TAKE CARE OF OUR SHOPPERS." While some worry public restrooms will bring in more drugs and vandalism... Shubert-Kwock says the community completed a 90-day pilot program two years ago - and that didn't happen. 135 "WE DID IT VERY WELL AND THERE WAS NO INCIDENT OF VIOLENCE OR CRIME OR ANYTHING." The Chinatown Business and Community Association President says that's because the program paid for a janitor to cleanup and watch after the facilities. The association wants the city to do the same. Shubert-Kwock says they've already lined up five locations for restrooms. One of those would go here in this building on hotel street -- right next to the police station. 253 "THE BUSES STOP THERE, THE MANY BUSES THAT USE THIS ROUTE AND PEOPLE STOP IN CHINATOWN TO SHOP AND THEY NEED TO GO SO IT IS THE NUMBER ONE LOCATION IN OUR OPINION." Another potential location is at the Kekaulike mall which already has security cameras and trash cans. 335 "WE DON'T NEED TO HAVE JUST ONE TYPE OF BATHROOM, WE COULD HAVE MULTIPLE TYPES OF BATHROOMS SO THAT FOR DIFFERENT LOCATIONS WE FIND THE BEST FIT FOR THAT TYPE OF BATHROOM." Shubert-Kwock tells us she's hopeful the city will come through. 352 "THEY DO WANT TO DO IT, THEY JUST WANT TO FIND A WAY THAT'S VIABLE." The resolution was pushed by Councilwoman Carol Fukunaga, who represents the district. Mayor Caldwell's administration has until February 28 to issue a plan.