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More parking, No promenade for Ala Moana Park - Honolulu, Hawaii news, sports & weather - KITV Channel 4

More parking, No promenade for Ala Moana Park

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HONOLULU -

          A change of plans for Oahu's most popular park. The City and County of Honolulu released it's revised "Master Plan" for Ala Moana Park.

After vocal opposition from residents, the city made parking a priority with its latest draft Environmental Impact Statement.

"The majority of the makai parking was kept, and people told us they wanted additional parking, so the plan will have 234 additional parking spaces," said Department of Parks and Recreation Director Michele Nekota.

"If they add in more parking sure I'm in favor of it, but not metered. No one wants metered parking," said Honolulu resident Kevin Lee.

In order to fit in the new spaces, they will be perpendicular to the road. That also means existing sidewalks, curbs and green space will have to be removed to make room.

"We are cutting into the parallel parking spaces, but not a lot of green space we're cutting into. We're trying to preserve our green space," added Nekota.

But some residents feel the plans still go too far.

"We don't want perpendicular parking on either side. We want everything to remain the same," exclaimed Pearlridge resident Cal Hideo.

Ala Moana park is more than 80 years old, and many agree it is in need of renovations to roads, restrooms and its irrigation system.

Already 28 million dollars has been set aside for fixing it up.

Because of citizens' concerns over too many changes to the "People's Park", the city removed a proposal for a grand promenade along the ocean.
Instead, the makai walkway would be expanded by about a foot, so it would be able to accommodate a bicycle lane.

"I think they should clean up the park, grow some grass and use the money some where else where it is needed. Instead of adding one more foot of cement. I see no sense in that," stated Honolulu resident Les Luke.

"It's not broken, why fix it?" asked Hideo.

But some feel there does need to be at least one big change at the beach park.

"Put sand on the beach, there is no sand," said Lee.

"We are working on sand replenishment. We are working on plans for that," added Nekota.

Along with plans for renovating waterways, adding landscaping at entrances, & putting in a dog park and children's play ground.

    The released document is a draft EIS, which means you can still let the City and County know what you think about the plans. But you only have 45 days to make your voice heard. If you want to learn more about the proposed changes and leave a comment, you can find it at www.honolulu.gov.
 

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