Revitalizing Chinatown - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Revitalizing Chinatown

By Kristine Uyeno

DOWNTOWN (KHNL) -Honolulu's mayor wants to revitalize Chinatown.

Mufi Hannemann and Chinatown merchants hope the new event, "Movie Nights at Aala Park" will attract more people to the area.

"Oh in Chinatown, a big change," said Cindy Lau, owner of Cindy's Lei Shop on Maunakea Avenue. "Now more people, more business, crowded and more parking, condominium coming up."

That's what Honolulu city officials strive for.

"Everybody comes here for lunch. So it's the evening time that people are more concerned about," said Kelfred Chang, director for the Chinatown Merchants.

He wants people to know it's okay to come after hours. That's why the city organizes events, such as Movie Night at the Park. It's a way to attract families here during the evening.

"I think the efforts is really good in a sense it's bringing back culture and history back to Chinatown," said Chang.

Merchants also say the First Friday events help to bring more arts to the other end of Chinatown on Nuuanu Avenue. They believe this revitalization benefits everyone.

"This is an opportunity where the newer immigrants, Cambodians, Laotians, even some of your Koreans, it's giving them a chance," said Chang.

A chance for business owners to thrive and a chance for more residents to enjoy the oldest Chinatown in the country.

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