Palama Market plans new site on old property


POSTED: Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Question: There is an uncompleted two-story commercial-type building on the Diamond Head/mauka corner of Kokea and King streets that has been vacant for 20 years in the same condition. Why hasn't it been torn down or finished? Would you be able to determine the status of this property? With all of the homeless on island, what a waste. (Two questions combined)

Answer: If all goes according to current plans, Palama Market will tear down the existing structure and build a new one to occupy.

But plans are still being reviewed, and there is no firm date yet as to when this will happen.

The owner of the 25,280-square-foot property at 1070 N. King St. is Kamehameha Schools (formerly Kamehameha Schools/Bishop Estate).

The current building, proposed in the mid-1990s as the Kokea Business Center — a commercial/retail center — “;fell into litigation,”; said Kekoa Paulsen, spokesman for Kamehameha Schools. “;It's just not been something we've been able to do much with.”;

However, for the past 12 months, Kamehameha Schools has been working with a potential tenant in Palama Market.

“;They are looking to create a totally new location for their market”; from the one on Dillingham Boulevard, Paulsen said.

Initially, plans were to use the current structure, but now it looks like demolition might be in the works, he said.

City building records show the property had been used as a Chevron gas station, which was demolished in 1993. In 1996, Ocean Pacific Realty applied for a building permit for the Kokea Business Center.

Records show the next building permit issued was to Kamehameha Schools last April, for new chain-link fencing and security gates and doors.

Over the years there has been a problem with the homeless entering the unsecured building, which has caught the attention of city building inspectors concerned with safety issues.

However, currently, “;the building lot is secure and, therefore, not in violation,”; a spokesman for the Building Division said.

“;We have taken steps to secure (the building), and we have had to move people out of there,”; Paulsen said. “;That's been part of the issue and part of the issue that Palama's been dealing with.”;

The city has reviewed the building permit application by Palama Market and sent it back with comments.

According to the application, the estimated value of the proposed work is $3 million.



To the people who returned my ID card, medical card and other valuable documents. I had made copies of the cards at Waipahu Longs and forgot to pick up the cards. Then, at the Waipahu Post Office, I forgot to pick up my portfolio containing my marriage license, birth certificate and other important papers. God bless those people. — Mrs. Mary K. Lopes


Write to “;Kokua Line”; at Honolulu Star-Bulletin, 7 Waterfront Plaza, Suite 210, 500 Ala Moana, Honolulu 96813; call 529-4773; fax 529-4750; or e-mail .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).