[ RELIGION ]
DENNIS ODA / DODA@STARBULLETIN.COM
Royal palms and new stone walls line Hale Laa Boulevard, the street that leads to the Mormon Hawaii Temple in Laie. Mormon leader Gordon Hinckley is in Hawaii to take part in a dedication ceremony today for the $5.5 million project.
Dedication is set
for Laie project
The Mormon president will help
celebrate road beautification
The president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is in Hawaii this weekend to dedicate a $5.5 million beautification project in Laie.
Gordon Hinckley, 94, leader of 12 million Mormons worldwide, was also scheduled to speak this morning at the December commencement at Brigham Young University-Hawaii.
He will speak at a "fireside" meeting tomorrow at the Honolulu Tabernacle, 1560 S. Beretania St. The 3 p.m. Honolulu Stake membership meeting will be broadcast to all Latter-day Saints stake centers with satellite dishes.
The 2 p.m. dedication ceremony today at the BYUH Cannon Activities Center in Laie is open to the public. It will celebrate completion of the 14-month project that redesigned Hale Laa Boulevard, the street leading to the Hawaii Temple in Laie. Blue rock walls now line the approach, with new sidewalks and streetlights. Norfolk pines that formerly lined the street were removed, and utility lines were put underground. New landscaping will include royal palms near the temple end of the road.
The beachfront property at the foot of the boulevard has been developed into a meditative garden with parking available at a 24-stall lot across from Laie Elementary School. A traffic circle was installed at the top of the street near the landmark temple.
The university entrance gateway was also redesigned, with rock walls and landscaping mirroring the Hale Laa features.
Renovations are still under way at the Hawaii Temple Visitor Center, which is expected to reopen in late January. A movie theater is included in the new design.