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Tuesday, December 3, 2013
HSTA, Hotel Workers Sign Open Letter Calling for Kakaako Development Moratorium
By News Release @ 2:29 PM :: 5466 Views :: Development, Rail

News Release from Kakaako United

Concerned citizen groups have written Governor Neil Abercrombie, Mayor Kirk Caldwell, and lawmakers, seeking resolution to long-standing infrastructure problems in Kakaʻako.  They also want more transparency from the state agency that is approving Kaka’ako’s massive development. – the Hawai‘i Community Development Authority (HCDA).

The City Council is poised to pass a resolution directing the city to form a task force of government and community representatives knowledgeable about long-standing sewer stench problems.  The community’s push for the task force and moratorium comes because neither the city nor HCDA addressed these problems before Kaka’ako’s unprecedented construction boom took off.

The letter, signed by 19 organizations, calls for the Governor to take responsibility for HCDAʻs actions, and to listen to major community concerns.

It requests a one-year moratorium on HCDA development approvals until completion of: an updated environmental impact study of the additional burden 37 new high rise condos will place on the area infrastructure; a comprehensive carrying capacity study assessing the buildings’ additional load on water supply and wastewater treatment; studies on traffic impact, school capacity (currently there are no schools in Kakaʻako), and parks and open green spaces (no new parks are planned for the anticipated 5,000 to 30,000 residents);  and a development plan for low and moderate income housing, as required by law.

Here is the letter:

Dear Governor Abercrombie,

We, the undersigned, seek a high quality of life for all Hawaii residents, advocating affordable housing and well-planned developments that meet the community’s needs.

We are therefore deeply concerned about the current rapid and uncoordinated development taking place in Kaka‘ako.  The Hawaii Community Development Authority (HCDA) is approving projects and granting variances that undermine existing plans and infrastructure capacity, thereby disregarding community health and quality of life.

To realign developers’ ambitions with sound community standards, it is mandatory to impose a moratorium on any new Kaka’ako development until sufficient infrastructure needs – sewer, water, roads, parks, schools -- are properly and fully addressed.  State and city government must require a:

  • Supplemental Environmental Impact Study addressing road, water, and sewer challenges
  • Comprehensive Carrying Capacity Study addressing Kaka’ako development impacts on Honolulu and Oahu water supply and wastewater treatment
  • Traffic Impact Analysis Report
  • School Capacity Analysis
  • Parks and Open Spaces Master Plan linked to national urban community standards
  • Low/Moderate Income Housing Plan for families earning less than 100% of Area Median Income (AMI)
  • Law imposing a one-year moratorium on HCDA approval of new projects that renews automatically until the above requirements are satisfied.

We would be happy to meet with you to discuss our concerns. Please contact Sharon Moriwaki at (808)428-1348 or email us at info@kakaakounited.org.

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