City to study Kakaako sewer odors

City to study Kakaako sewer odors

As the population of Kakaako is set to double over the next decade, city council members are taking a close look at whether its infrastructure is adequate.

"We do need affordable housing but we need the infrastructure to support all of this housing," said City Councilwoman Ann Kobayashi.

The council's Public Works and Sustainability Committee approved a resolution that would require the city to study complaints of sewage odors by residents and provide a report by January.

The move comes after widespread complaints of odors by area residents, who blame the problem on new development.

But city officials said they are unsure about what's causing the smells.

"We have ideas of what it is but it's not one thing that's causing the odors, we think it's multiple things," said Lori Kahikina, director of the department of environmental services.

John Horvath, resident manager for the One Waterfront Towers apartments, said the smells coincide with heavy rains.

"We had a day and a half of sewer gas smells coming up through the apartment units that seemed to coincide with the amount of ground water that infiltrated the sanitary sewer water system," he said.

Mayor Kirk Caldwell said he believes the infrastructure is adequate.

"Already, $300 million in infrastructure has gone into the Kakaako area alone. That means repaved roads, and underground utilities, better sewer wider sidewalks," he said.

Resolution 13-267 next goes to the full council for approval.

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