Friday, March 23, 2001

A model of the new fire department headquarters to
be built at Queen and South streets.

Fire officials
to get new Kakaako

The $10 million facility will
put HFD brass closer to
other agencies

By Gordon Y.K. Pang

The Honolulu Fire Department will get a a new home in Kakaako as part of the city's $500 million capital improvements package for the coming budget year.

Fire Chief Attilio Leonardi told the City Council's Budget Committee yesterday that the $10.3 million facility on Quinn Lane will put HFD brass closer to the city emergency operations center at the Honolulu Municipal Building three blocks away, Honolulu Hale and other government agencies.


"We're moving there because of its proximity to you," Leonardi said.

Fire administration has been housed in a 15,000-square-foot office at the Airport Industrial Park on Koapaka Street for about 10 years. Taxpayers pay about $350,000 annually for the leased space, Leonardi said.

The new headquarters would give HFD administration about 25,000 square feet. It would replace a former maintenance shop building that was built in 1931. It currently houses the city's television services and other agencies, which would need to be moved.

Leonardi is hoping construction can begin in a year and be completed by spring 2003.

The L-shaped lot houses two other HFD structures that are part of future phases of the redevelopment project.

The original South Street Kakaako Fire Station, built in 1929 and listed on the federal and state historic registers, is being eyed as the future home of the HFD museum. It now is being used to store HFD equipment.

The museum would include historical items and fire prevention education exhibits. Leonardi said funding for that $1.1 million renovation project will be requested next year.

The third phase of the project calls for rebuilding the current Kakaako station on the Queen Street side of the site. That building was constructed in 1974 to replace the South Street facility. The new facility would include fiber-optic network access, provisions for female firefighters and a decontamination room.

That phase is expected to cost about $2.5 million, Leonardi said.

Other city capital improvement projects described to the Council yesterday included:

>> $1.1 million for enhancement of the automated permit management and tracking system in the Department of Planning and Permitting.

>> $4.5 million for an East Honolulu police substation.

>> $1 million for improvements at the Ted Makalena Golf Course in Waipahu.

>> $5 million for a Waianae emergency alternate route.

E-mail to City Desk

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