Planning for the Plan

Molokai Community Plan update underway.

County planners have been planning for it, Planning Commissioners have been waiting on it and residents have heard about it for years. The Molokai Community Plan update is finally on the move. Maui County planners are working to kick-start the development process on Molokai with a series of public information and input events.

The first Molokai Community Plan was adopted in 1984 and was updated last in 2001. That plan was supposed to last until this year, when a new update would be created. However, that schedule is about two years behind, and the new update is projected to be completed in 2012.

Maui County Planners from the Long Range Planning Division David Yamashita, Kathleen Kern and former Molokai Planner Nancy McPherson are heading the effort. But community input is essential, and the next six months will be devoted to holding events to gather public opinion and contribution to the plan.

“We want to make community planning fun for the whole family,” said McPherson at last week’s Molokai Planning Commission, where the county planners presented the process for completing the plan update.

Phasing It In
Yamashita said the planning process includes several phases. Research and data collection is currently taking place until September of this year, and a series of community engagement workshops will be organized between June and December. After that, planners will develop a draft of the plan, to be reviewed by the Molokai Planning Commission. Finally, the Maui County Council will review the plan, for a projected completion in 2012.

McPherson said a Kick-Off Open House event is planned for June 26 at Kalaniana`ole Hall. At this event, the County planners will introduce both themselves and the planning process to the community, present basic information like data and maps, and obtain initial feedback on the issues, problems and opportunities that need to be addressed.

Next, a Principles, Issues, Opportunities and Goals Workshop is scheduled for September as an all day event for individuals to work in groups to identify and discuss the important issues for Molokai. In October, an Ideas Charrette will take place to begin to fit together ideas and solutions. Finally, And Analysis and Evaluation Open House is planned for December as the culmination of community input for the plan update process.

In addition to public input at these events, a Community Plan Advisory Committee (CPAC) will be formed through an application process. Nine community members will be selected, with the County Council making the final decision on individuals. 

Why the Community Plan
The purpose of the Molokai Community Plan is to reflect current and anticipated conditions for the island, and advances to planning goals and policies. It also guides decision-making for the implementation of the plan.

Among its goals, the Community Plan addresses the problems and opportunities for development in the community; projects the social, economic and environmental effects of such development; designates land uses and zoning; recognizes historical and archeological sites; and ensures compliance with the Maui County General Plan.

There are also some new requirements for the 2012 plan that were not part of the 2001 plan. Those include streetscape and landscape principles, an action component that identifies specific projects and programs to be developed, a capital improvement plan, a financial plan that address the development budget, and a monitoring schedule that will assess the plan’s milestones and update the County Council with status reports. The 2012 update will also address affordable housing and economic improvement plans.

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