Safeway Store Displacing Some Local Businesses - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Safeway Store Displacing Some Local Businesses

Keoki Ching  at his soon-to-be former surf shop on Kapahulu Avenue. Keoki Ching at his soon-to-be former surf shop on Kapahulu Avenue.
The future shopping plaza location for a Safeway grocery store on Kapahulu Ave. The future shopping plaza location for a Safeway grocery store on Kapahulu Ave.

by Darren Pai

HONOLULU (KHNL) - Keoki Ching started shaping surfboards in Kapahulu just seven months ago, but now he's getting ready to move out.

"For us it was a good opportunity to get our business started and running," Ching said. "We knew that it was a possibility that Safeway might come in."

Safeway plans to build a new store at 870 Kapahulu avenue, its 13th location on Oahu.

"We got word that we might not be here for the long haul, and we took that risk," Ching said.

Now Ching and the staff the Mister3 surf shop have until September 15th to find a new location, pack up their inventory and move out.

"We haven't found any place yet with rent being as crazy as it is every place else we're having a difficult time," Ching said.

Other shops at the strip mall posted signs to inform their customers about their plans to move and re-open at other locations.

Safeway's original plans called for including a gas station. However, that idea was dropped when it ran into community opposition.

During community meetings, residents complained about the impact a gas station would have on traffic in the area.

Safeway plans to hold a groundbreaking ceremony this Saturday. Construction is scheduled to be complete in the fall of 2007.

As for the guys at Mister3 - despite the need to move they say they have no regrets.

"It's difficult certainly to move our shop," Ching said. "But we take it with a grain of salt and move forward."

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