Hawaii Nature Center breaks ground for new rain pavilion

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - By: Michael Hanson

Members of the Hawaii Nature Center (HNC) gathered for a groundbreaking ceremony and blessing of a newly planned rain pavilion that will allow the organization to serve more members of the community throughout the year.

"This day represents a milestone for the Hawaii Nature Center," said Jan Sullivan, HNC board president. "This rain pavilion groundbreaking is also the groundbreaking for a brighter future in environmental education."

Teaming up with HNC is Architects Hawaii Ltd. Through their 1% Solution program provides pro bono architectural services to non-profit organizations.

"The pavilion is intended to be a rain shelter, where kids will gather and be prepped for the programs of the day," said Bettina Mehnert, Architects Hawaii Vice President. It will be a contemporary interpretation of the traditional Hawaiian A-Frame."

The structure will have a raised roof that provides natural light and ventilation. Translucent panels are installed on one side between timber structural posts to protect participants from wind-driven rain.

The 1,000 square foot pavilion is a $192,000 project, with $115,000 for construction.

"It's a monumental point in our organization's history," said Dyanna Okaziki, HNC Executive Director. "You know we've been around for thirty years plus now, and this marks a whole new beginning for us."

A grand opening for the new structure is planned for early 2013. HNC is located in Maikiki Heights.

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