Proposed Laie hotel clears another hurdle - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Proposed Laie hotel clears another hurdle

Steven Wheelwright Steven Wheelwright
Lauren Achitoff Lauren Achitoff
Marvin Iseke Marvin Iseke

By Brooks Baehr - bio | email

LAIE (HawaiiNewsNow) – A proposal to build a 223 room hotel in Laie moved closer to securing needed permits when the Honolulu City Council's Zoning Committee voted in favor of the development during a special committee meeting at Kahuku High School Wednesday night.

The full City Council will make its final decision on the project July 6 at Honolulu Hale.

At least 250 people attended Wednesday's Zoning Committee meeting. A majority of those who testified spoke in favor of the project.

"It fits the parameters the Laie community, the Koolauloa region and the island of Oahu as far as its size, location, style, and purposes are concerned," said area resident Richard Vierra.

If approved, the hotel will be built on almost ten acres of land where the 49-unit Laie Inn used to stand and where the Laie McDonalds and Chevron Station are still located. The land is owned by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

BYU-Hawaii president Steven Wheelwright said the hotel would be an asset to students studying tourism and hotel management.

"We're anxious to have those students become certified and to have a benefit to their education that would come from participating as student employees and interns at that hotel," Wheelwright said.

Those who oppose the development voiced concerns about additional traffic, inadequate drainage, and further erosion of their rural lifestyle.

"This hotel is the beginning of a very sad event for this side of the island. We hear about how much we need this hotel when Turtle Bay is just ten minutes down the road," said Punaluu resident Lauren Achitoff.

"The proposed hotel is too big for this area. This project has many drainage … Laie has a problem with drainage," testified Marvin Iseke of Haaula.

Copyright 2011 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved.

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