Community Development

What is community development? How should community development be governed?

Kawela Bridge Project Completion

Friday, August 29th, 2014

Kawela Bridge Project Completion

Photo by Bianca Moragne.

There’s good news for drivers who live on the east end as well as residents of the Kawela area: construction on the Kawela Bridge is finally complete.

The former, 70-year-old bridge was deteriorating, and a $6 million construction project began back in 2012 to remove the original bridge and replace it with what you see today.

The old bridge, constructed around 1940, was clogged with stream deposits which impeded the flow of water below the deck, resulting in flooding in neighboring properties, said Project Engineer at Goodfellow Bros., Inc., Clayton Morrell.

Goodfellow Bros., Inc was contracted to remove the old bridge and build a new one in its place with a capacity to handle high volumes of water to pass beneath the roadway and remove stream deposit buildup that migrates down, Morrell said.…

College Continues Expansion Plans

Wednesday, July 23rd, 2014

College Continues Expansion Plans

Photo courtesy Donna Haytko-Paoa.

Picture this: a higher learning education center with a spacious auditorium, high-tech computer labs, larger classrooms and a grassy campus pavilion right here on Molokai. This long-awaited dream may become a reality for UH Maui College, Molokai now that the college has completed its Long-Range Development Plan (LRDP).

The college worked with PBR Hawaii –an urban planning firm –to draft the LRDP which was started in 2012.  The LRDP was approved and finalized in June 2014. This plan will guide the development of the college to the year 2027. The first measure of development will include expanding the current two-acre site to a five-acre campus that will utilize the land to the west along Kamehameha Hwy.…

Short-Term Rental Laws Modified

Wednesday, July 16th, 2014

After the legalization of short-term rentals in 2012, Maui County planners say things are going well, with nine permitted properties on Molokai since then. But planners are still seeking to improve the laws that govern them.

At last week’s meeting, the Molokai Planning Commission (MoPC) reviewed the ordinance, addressed concerns and discussed issues relevant to Molokai to better implement the process. The Commission welcomed resident testimony, but there was a lack of attendance at the scheduled public hearing.

“I think today’s lack of turnout is a sign that it’s going pretty well and that the law is working,” said Staff Planner of Maui County’s Department of Planning, Gina Flammer.…

Long Range Development Plan for College Campus

Thursday, July 10th, 2014

Long Range Development Plan for College Campus

UHMCM News Release

After years of effort, UH Maui College, Molokai (UHMCM) has completed its Long Range Development Plan (LRDP) 2013, which was approved and received in June 2014.  The purpose of the LRDP is to guide the development of the Molokai Education Center to the year 2027, beginning with the transition from the existing two-acre campus and expanding to a five-acre campus utilizing the land to the west along the main road to Duke Maliu Regional Park.

The LRDP includes engaging visual aids on accordion style fold-outs to provide the reader with a clear idea of how the future campus might look. …

Molokai Trains for Hurricane Preparedness

Thursday, June 12th, 2014

Molokai Trains for Hurricane Preparedness

The National Guard demonstrates an emergency communication system that would allow Molokai to communicate with first responders across the state during a disaster. Photo by Bianca Moragne.

Imagine this: A destructive hurricane is spotted in the Central Pacific Ocean south of Molokai with wind speeds of more than 100 miles per hour. Once it hits land, the hurricane delivers a storm surge of destructive winds that leave many residents without electricity, shelter, food or water — and wipes out the island’s communication systems.

On Molokai last week, participants in statewide hurricane preparedness exercises run by the Hawaii State Civil Defense (HSCD), engaged in communication systems training and practiced emergency procedures in case this scenario becomes reality.…

Island’s First (Temporary) Stoplight

Wednesday, June 11th, 2014

Island’s First (Temporary) Stoplight

Molokai’s first stoplight installed at the Kawela Stream Bridge construction site was only directing traffic for two weeks. As of Friday before going to press, Goodfellow Bros. Project Engineer Clayton Morrell said the traffic light is scheduled to be removed on Monday.

“It was only there so we could pave the west-bound lane and shoulder,” said Morrell. “[During that time] we had to shift to one-lane traffic.”

Contractor Goodfellow Bros. is putting the final touches on the state Department of Transportation (DOT) bridge project before scheduled completion at the end of July.

The next big change drivers will notice is a shift in traffic from the curved, detour route to traveling over the new bridge, said Morrell.…

Undersea Cable Still On the Table for Some Islands

Wednesday, June 4th, 2014

State and federal energy officials got a clear message from Molokai residents who voiced their continued opposition to a potential undersea transmission cable in Hawaii that would transport energy interisland.

“I’m totally pro-renewable energy which is why I’m very concerned and upset by this document,” said Molokai resident and energy expert Mike Bond, referring to the Hawaii Clean Energy Draft Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS). “The one thing that concerns me the most is the tacit acceptance of the undersea cable… I think the cable is a disaster — it’s hyper-costly, and in my view, a political, corporate scam.”

The PEIS is a 1,000-page-plus document that analyzes potential environmental impacts associated with a wide variety of clean energy technologies and activities across the state.…

Feeding Molokai Sustainably

Tuesday, June 3rd, 2014

Feeding Molokai Sustainably

Molokai used to be known as “Molokai `Aina Momona,” or the abundant land, for its plentiful food supply that fed a population many times its current size. Like much of the state, Molokai now imports most of the food found in its stores and restaurants — 98 percent, in fact.

But the food served on Molokai’s dinner tables is a different story. About 40 percent of food consumed comes from subsistence sources such as hunting, fishing, gathering and home grown fruits and vegetables, according to a 2012 study conducted by Sust `aina ble Molokai.

“[The high level of subsistence] means that if disaster hits, Molokai is actually better off than other islands even though food production is less [than other islands],” said Emillia Noordhoek, executive director of Sust `aina ble Molokai.…

Harbor Ferry Terminal Project Completed

Wednesday, May 28th, 2014

Harbor Ferry Terminal Project Completed

DOT News Release

A $9.1 million project to improve the Kaunakakai Harbor Gerry Terminal has been completed, the Hawaii Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) announced last week.

Passengers using the ferry from Kaunakakai Harbor, Molokai, to Lahaina Harbor, Maui, now have an upgraded and modernized facility with an expanded passenger waiting area, upgraded restroom facilities, and a larger parking lot that allows for better traffic flow.

“This project demonstrates my administration’s commitment to improving Hawaii’s infrastructure across all islands, and is a great example of state departments working together to complete projects,” said Gov.…

Gabbard to Assist Veterans in Completion of Center

Wednesday, May 21st, 2014

Gabbard to Assist Veterans in Completion of Center

Photo by Catherine Cluett.

After a nearly decade-long fight to build a veterans’ center on Molokai, including a few years in the construction phase, the building still isn’t finished. But Molokai veterans hope that a visit last week from Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, herself a combat veteran with the Hawaii National Guard, will help spur its completion.

Inside the painted but empty interior of the building on Kaunakakai Place, Gabbard talked with members of Molokai Veterans Caring for Veterans (MVCV) about the challenges they are facing with both the center and receiving services on Molokai. She also honored the late MVCV Commander Larry Helm by visiting his family and promising her support to complete the center, which was his dream.…