Molokai Ranch Selling Off Commercial Properties
Maunaloa Post Office lot already in escrow
According to the La`au Point Draft Environmental Impact Statement, Molokai Ranch is threatening to sell off “entitled lands on a piecemeal basis” should the La`au Point development fall through. However, the Ranch is already trying to cash in on several commercial lots in downtown Maunaloa.
A 1.28-acre piece of land, where the Maunaloa Post Office and The Big Wind Kite Factory are, may be the first to go.
“That’s going to be a done deal,” realtor Jim Spence said. “The buyers are satisfied and the deal will go through.” Spence wouldn’t disclose numbers because the sale was still in escrow. The asking price was set on $450,000.
The Ranch is also selling at least a dozen more Maunaloa commercial properties, as listed on Molokai Land and Homes Web site. The highest priced lots are the 1.92-acre property where the General Store and the gas station are located, advertised for $1.1 million; and the 1.83-acre where the now defunct Village Grill sits, for $1.6 million.
General Store co-owner Keoni Lindo said he knew the lots were up for sale. But he said he didn’t know about the current status of the land where his business sits.
This wasn’t the case across the street from the General Store. Jonathan and Daphne Socher, who own the Kite Factory, were on a trip and couldn’t be reached. But a close friend of the Sochers said everyone was surprised. “We found out through the newspaper, when it was already on escrow,” she said. According to the anonymous source, no one informed the shop owners of the sale. The Sochers have done business in Maunaloa for at least 26 years.
Peke Sagario has been working at Maunaloa Post Office for the past ten years. She was also unaware the land was for sale. “I found out through a customer who showed me the newspaper,” she said.
Molokai Ranch Administrative Assistant Rose O’Keefe was on a leave and couldn’t be reached for comment.
Realtor Jill McGowan, who represents the Ranch’s Maunaloa lots, was also on leave until Wednesday. A phone message redirected potential buyers to Spence, who works out of the Lahaina branch of Coldwell Banker. He said he wasn’t sure about the future of the lands. “Last I heard was that those properties will be going to be part of a new development,” Spence said.