Thursday, May 27, 1999

Mililani residents
face off at meeting to
discuss hockey rink

By Mary Adamski


Plans to dedicate city park space in Mililani for roller hockey tournaments and for skateboarding were opposed by the neighbors who aired their concerns about noise and traffic congestion before the neighborhood board last night.

City Parks Director Bill Balfour said the planned 200-by-100-foot hockey rink "is essentially a go" for Kaoma'aiku Neighborhood Park. But in response to recent opposition from Makaunulau Street residents, the concrete slab will be poured farther from homes and closer to the H-2 freeway. And construction of temporary parking for 50 cars plus toilet facilities will be expedited, he said.

"My concern is safety. I don't want to kill anybody," said Ron Gustie, one of several people to describe children darting into traffic and double-parked cars during soccer games which already interfere with mail delivery and pose a potential threat should emergency vehicles need to pass. "Unless you can do it properly, don't do it."

Mililani/Waipio/Melemanu Neighborhood Board members voted 7-5 in support of the plan, a tally that fell short of the majority required to pass the resolution. The board supported the rink in a 1997 vote.

The board last night unanimously supported another resolution backing construction of a skateboard facility at a site "yet to be determined" and creation of a task force to seek a satisfactory location.

"I don't think there's a place in Mililani where people won't object," board member Michael Castell commented after hearing residents' complaints.

The neighbors are already inconvenienced by 16-acre Makaunulau Park, heavily used by soccer leagues less than a mile away, Robert Heberer told the board. "Don't add another island-wide use to a neighborhood. Isn't there such a thing as a park for family use?"

"There won't be an influx of thousands of kids to play here," said Paul Xavier, president of Mililani In-line Hockey Association, which has 200 youth members.

Roller hockey is "one of the fastest-growing sports in America," Rich Guillory of the association said. This would be the first city park to provide for the sport; otherwise the teams have used volleyball and basketball courts.

E-mail to City Desk

Text Site Directory:
[News] [Business] [Features] [Sports] [Editorial] [Do It Electric!]
[Classified Ads] [Search] [Subscribe] [Info] [Letter to Editor]
[Stylebook] [Feedback]

© 1999 Honolulu Star-Bulletin