Kuilima Resort Submits Status Report

posted in: September 2008 | 0

In accordance with the Land Use Commission’s July 11 decision, attorneys for the Kuilima Resort Company submitted on August 18 a 16-page report on its progress toward meeting the LUC’s nine redistricting conditions. The LUC will discuss this report at its October meeting in Honolulu. The following is a summary:

Condition 1, full-service hotels: KRC claims it has made “significant financial investments”, which include the completion of a wastewater treatment plant (1990), the Opana well facility (1991), a water transmission system along Kamehameha Highway (1991), the Palmer golf course (1991, with a maintenance facility completed in 2003)), and $100 million in improvements to the existing Turtle Bay hotel and Ocean Villas (2005).

The City and County of Honolulu approved in 1990 and 1991 the consolidation and resubdivision of several parcels for hotel, park, tennis club, golf course, and roadway use.

KRC has received tentative county approval of a subdivision for three park sites, three access easements, and a 100-foot-wide shoreline easement. KRC has also been trying to get city and state approvals for traffic improvements at the proposed West Kuilima Drive and Kamehameha Highway.

Also, KRC developed an employee training program in 1991 and the company’s landscape master plan was accepted by the county in 2006. Although not included in the report, a building permit for a hotel at Kawela Bay was approved by the county in 1990, but expired in 1991.

Condition 2, employee housing: KRC simply reports, “Petitioner agrees to comply with the foregoing condition. As of this date, however, no new resort condominium units have been developed on the property.”

Condition 3, road improvements: In July 2005, KRC submitted construction plans to the state Department of Transportation for the intersection of West Kuilima Drive and Kamehameha Highway. The DOT suspended the plan’s review on March 2006 pending acceptance of a Traffic Impact Analysis Report update. KRC submitted one in February 2006 and has amended it several times. As of August 18, the DOT was still reviewing the report.

KRC is also working with the DOT to improve the Kuilima Drive/Kamehameha Highway intersection, and with affected land owners regarding Marconi Road and Kamehameha Highway intersection improvements.

The county approved a Roadway Improvement and Phasing Plan in May 2006 and widening plans for Kuilima Drive last July. Bids for the project were due August 21.

Condition 4, water source and infrastructure development: KRC is working with the Honolulu Board of Water Supply to put Opana Wells 1 and 2 into service. The BWS approved modification plans for the wells last March.

Condition 5, improving Punaho`olapa Marsh: While improving the adjacent golf course, KRC constructed a moat to prevent feral animals from entering the marsh and killing native birds. KRC dedicates about 1,200-1,300 hours a year to maintaining the moat.

Improvements to the marsh were also made in 1990.

Condition 6, meeting State Historic Preservation Requirements: KRC states that no construction or land disturbance has occurred in the area of identified archaeological sites.

In 1988, the U.S. Corps of Engineers, SHPD, the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, and the Office of Hawaiian Affairs entered into a memorandum of agreement regarding human remains that might be on the property. In March 2003, KRC submitted to KRC an archaeological mitigation report, which the SHPD acknowledged and accepted as final in March 2005.

KRC’s report does not acknowledge an October 2006 letter from the State Historic Preservation Division urging the resort to either do more achaeological testing or revise its plans to avoid burials.

Condition 7, public access and parking: Kawela Park and two access easements were subdivided in 1989. In early 2006, the county approved shoreline walkway construction plans and the state certified the shoreline (although shoreline certifications are only good for one year).

Condition 8, sewage treatment plant and infrastructure: Completed in 1990. KRC also created in 2007 a public utility to operate and manage the plant.

Condition 9, coastal resources monitoring program: The state Department of Land and Natural Resources’ Division of Aquatic Resources has accepted KRC’s coastal resources monitoring program, which is currently being implemented.

— Teresa Dawson

Volume 19, Number 3 September 2008

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