Council panel gives park green light


POSTED: Friday, June 04, 2010

Planning on a 50-acre regional park in Nanakuli can begin after a City Council committee reversed action on a measure allowing for the development.

The resolution adopting a change in the public infrastructure map for the Waianae Sustainable Communities Plan area was tabled in the Planning Committee last week.

It was brought back for a special hearing yesterday by committee Chairman Ikaika Anderson.

“;The only reason we decided to hear this is because I feel your community deserved an opportunity to come out here and share your feelings with the City Council,”; Anderson told the numerous members of the Waianae Coast community who testified in support of the park. “;Many of you did not have that opportunity last week.”;

Residents came out in strong support of a regional park that would allow youth activities to take place closer to home. They also opposed further development of a landfill.

Resolution 10-114 was passed unanimously by the Planning Committee with three members—Gary Okino, Ann Kobayashi and Rod Tam—changing their votes.

The park would be sited on land owned by Leeward Land Co., across the street from the landfill operated by its sister company, PVT Land Co., the city's only landfill for construction and demolition waste.

Leeward Land opposed the resolution, noting the proposed park site was one of four locations previously recommended for a new construction and demolition landfill by a 2003 landfill selection committee.

The existing PVT landfill is expected to reach capacity in six to 10 years, the company said.

“;With no place to dispose of debris, the only alternative would be a moratorium on new construction,”; Leeward Land said in a statement. “;If projects are canceled or postponed, construction will grind to a halt taking down 8 percent of Hawaii's economy and thousands of jobs along with it.

“;And where will debris generated by Oahu's 20-year rail project go?”;

Hannemann administration officials supported the proposal, saying the city continues to look at options for disposing of construction and demolition debris, such as recycling.

Tim Steinberger, director of environmental services, added that the Leeward Land site is not the only location for a new landfill.

Okino agreed with the city's assessment.

“;I think there's still time to look for another site,”; he said. “;There are still options to use the current site more efficiently.”;

The resolution now goes before the full Council at its regular meeting set for Wednesday.