Drought Has Parks Taking A Lot of Heat

Les Chang
Les Chang

KAPIOLANI PARK (KHNL) - Brown patches are sprouting all over Kapiolani Park. The challenge is keeping parks green without drying out the city's water supply. Signs of Hawaii's dry spell are starting to show all over Honolulu parks.

"In the 2 1/2 years I've been the Director, this is the dryest summer we've had," says Les Chang, Director of Honolulu's Parks and Recreation Department.

The drought isn't as severe on Oahu as on neighbor islands. The Honolulu Board of Water Supply has not issued mandatory limits on water use. But Chang says they're taking action now in case dry weather continues.

"We're aware that conservation, it may be coming, but right now we're watering at a minimum based on the conditions because every park is different," he says.

Meanwhile, the city's golf courses have managed to stay green.

"At the present time, we don't see that it would have any significant impact," says Sidney A. Quintal, Director of Enterprise Services, the agency that oversees the city's golf courses.

The city taps into several water sources to keep the turf healthy, but as with parks, conservation is key to keeping grass green.

Park leaders say the concern with letting parks go dry is the grass has a harder time keeping dirt down so dust becomes a problem.