Kakaako park is no stranger to vandalism
I am a frequent user of the restroom pavilion on the Ewa end of Kakaako Waterfront Park. Since the charcoal receptacle there broke and was removed, people are dumping used charcoal on the nearby rocks. The cats use the charcoal as a litter box and have left a large amount of feces, causing a major stench. This causes people to try and cover the feces with cardboard, plastic bags and all sorts of trash. The feces also cause a major infestation of flies. The conditions are unpleasant and unsanitary for the many children and fishermen who go there. Who should be contacted to get another charcoal receptacle in the pavilion to alleviate these problems?
Answer: Next time, call the Hawaii Community Development Authority, which oversees Kakaako Waterfront Park, at 587-2870, or e-mail email@example.com.
Besides sharing concerns about cleanliness, usage, activities or vandalism, park users are welcomed to make recommendations "on how we can make their park experience more enjoyable," said Richard Kuitunen,* asset manager for the authority.
The damaged bins will be replaced soon by the state Department of Land and Natural Resources' Parks Division, which handles daily maintenance at the park, he said.
DLNR was able to get help from participants in the prisoner work program from the Oahu Community Correctional Center to help with the cat refuse problem. The inmates cleaned up the entire revetment area on Thursday, Kuitunen said.
DLNR regularly inspects for and cleans up cat feces, while authorized cat caregivers also are at the park daily to clean up after the cats, he said. The caregivers practice the Trap, Neuter and Release Management Program, he said.
The maintenance nightmare can be traced to vandals, who "seem to enjoy needlessly destroying park property," Kuitunen said.
For example, six additional charcoal bins were installed last year, four of which have been destroyed (including the one you cite). There currently are five bin stations at the park.
Dealing with vandals is a continuing problem.
In addition to vandals shooting out lights and kicking out footlights, Kuitunen said the park is constantly dealing with many other problems, among them graffiti; mutilation of plants; abuse of feral cats that lead to their euthanasia; broken tree limbs and stripped bark; rocks, rebars, etc., thrown "to foul lawnmowers"; broken sprinkler heads and bathroom fixtures; intentionally clogged drains in comfort stations; theft of signs, newly installed plants, irrigation rain sensors and brass drain covers; burning of vegetation and covers of irrigation controls; abandoned property; and tapping into irrigation lines for unauthorized use of water and tapping into lamp post lines.
Despite all this, "We don't feel that any of our problems are unique to Kakaako," Kuitunen said. "In fact, because of our security patrols and special-duty HPD officers, we may experience fewer problems than other state parks."
Got a question or complaint?
Call 529-4773, fax 529-4750, or write to Kokua Line, Honolulu Star-Bulletin, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., No. 7-210, Honolulu 96813. As many as possible will be answered. E-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
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