Friday, July 27, 2001

City & County of Honolulu

City approves plans for
church in Waikele

By Mary Adamski

A Central Oahu church has received the green light from the city Department of Planning and Permitting for plans to build a two-story sanctuary building and day-care facility in Waikele.

Department Director Randall Fujiki issued a conditional use permit to Grace Bible Church West Oahu for the $8 million complex planned for a 3.3-acre parcel at Kukula and Pakela streets mauka of Waikele Elementary School.

Neighbors, concerned about the traffic and noise impact on the residential area, had asked that the city set limits on the hours of operation and require sufficient parking. They expressed concerns at a June public hearing.

After opposition in 1996, the church went back to the drawing board and made changes that include providing 214 parking places on site.

The Rev. Sidney Sumida said the city has added a requirement that the church extend its loading zone to ease anticipated traffic problems.

Other conditions imposed by the city require that the church maintain "quiet hours" between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. daily, which is standard for meeting facilities. The applicant was required to air-condition the buildings to contain noise and to shield exterior lighting so it does not encroach on surrounding homes.

The pastor said the church expects to begin site preparation before the end of the year.

Plans are to build in two increments. Phase One will be construction of a building with a 360-foot sanctuary and classrooms for 90 children. A second building with a 750-foot assembly area and offices is slated for completion in 2008.

The congregation of about 225 people now meets at Waipahu Elementary School.

City & County of Honolulu

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