City lifeguard offices were part of the historic Waikiki natatorium when the war memorial opened in the 1920s.
They remain there today in a small spot tucked away in the mauka Ewa corner.
The offices look like they are holding up remarkably well, in contrast to the deteriorating pool and bathrooms.
"This is the center for our operations of the South Shore so we definitely have to think about alternate sites and how it affects the operation," said Ocean Safety Administrator Ralph Goto.
Lifeguard captain Paul Marino recalls moving Ocean Safety out of the natatorium offices more than 30 years ago when the structure was first condemned. He's not looking forward to the day he will move out again.
With the idea that the war memorial's days were numbered, the city began looking at an open green space just Ewa of the Waikiki Aquarium for a new substation.
The pushback came from the area's watchdog group.
The Kapiolani Park Preservation Society sees the new structure as a land grab of prime park space.
"We were surprised to learn the city spent $100,000 on basically secret planning to take green space for a city administration building," said Alethea Rebman.
The plans they say, for additional parking and office space was for non-park use.
"The society works to protect green space in the park and the land does not belong to the city. It is under a public charitable trust," said Rebman.
And that, she said limits what the city can do.
Those plans are up in the air, as Rebman is prepared to mount a legal challenge over the shoreline structure.
In the meantime, Ocean Safety’s need for this spot isn’t going away.
"Our jet skis can get to any spot in Waikiki in a matter of minutes. We don’t have to go to the harbor to launch, and that’s the key to whole idea to minimize response times to get to people to save them," Goto said.
Now there's prospect of a new landlord, and no new place to go.
"We have not heard what’s in our future. We would be very interested in learning what’s planned," said Goto.
Goto said when State land director William Aila dove the natatorium pool last month, he told lifeguards he was not inclined to kick them out, until they had somewhere to move to.