Zip line to be tested at Hilton Hawaiian Village next month

Zip line may become reality in Waikiki

WAIKIKI (HawaiiNewsNow) - A zip line test will be done at the Hilton Hawaiian Village next month. The state approved the feasibility study by Waikiki Beach Activities on Friday.

"With the majority of our visitors being return visitors, over 70%, they're asking our people, 'What else can we do?'" said Robert Hampton, chair of Waikiki Beach Activities.

The test line will extend 950 feet from a six-story parking garage, going over an oceanfront lagoon. A 20-pound weight will be sent down the line to a simulated landing zone on a vehicle parked on state property on the makai-end of the lagoon.

"I think for a tourist that we would enjoy it. We would certainly have fun riding it, but from the neighboring hotels, I think it could be a bit of an eyesore," said Australian visitor Andrea Borserio.

"The board felt that doing a feasibility study at this point is not an indication that anything is going to be approved in the future, so therefore why not allow the applicant to do their feasibility study?" explained William Aila, Jr., chair of the Department of Land and Natural Resources.

The Board of Land and Natural Resources voted to allow the test, but one member raised concerns about safety.

"Accidents don't happen too often with zip lines, but when they do, you go down and you make (die). Not too many survivors when they have an accident," said Stanley Roehrig, a BLNR member.

The operation will be designed by specialists from the Flyin Hawaiian zip line company. Hotel guests and neighbors will also be asked for feedback.

"We'll be able to discover if there are some issues that would prohibit the use of a zip line in our environment, but we're going to be very thorough," said Hampton.

The test will run from October 20-22. If the resort ends up approving a permanent zip line, Waikiki Beach Activities would still need to obtain the proper permits to operate the attraction.

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