Ala Wai Small Boat Harbor Gets $4 Million Facelift

Dean Powell
Dean Powell
Glen Pang
Glen Pang

By Mari-Ela David

WAIKIKI (KHNL) -- The docks are so old, the state says many of them have surpassed their life span. On Monday, Governor Linda Lingle announced the Ala Wai Small Boat Harbor will get more than $4 million in improvements.

Boaters say renovations are much-needed. If you walk through some of the docks you'll see danger signs posted all over.

Sinking docks, loose planks - the harbor is a floating safety hazard, and boaters say it's about time the state steps in.

"As far as being able to tie your boat in, in case there's like any big storms or anything," said boater Dean Powell.

The docks are so old, some parts break off and float away. Boaters say they end up having to lasso them in.

"Also the canal up here, every time it rains it brings in tons of debris. One time I saw a couch floating down through the canal," said boater Nick Naiyoke.

Many slips are empty because of the dilapidated docks, and with the harbor struggling to keep up with the demand, boaters end up on a long waiting list.

"I've heard as much as five years," said boater Glen Pang.

Pang is among those on the waiting list. He has a temporary three-month permit. That means, he has to move to a new harbor once it expires.

"Just having to jump from place to place, I think it's a good excuse to sail the boat and go somewhere else but it is frustrating," Pang said.

With the $4 million from the state, boaters say they hope it'll be smooth sailing from here on out.

A big chunk of the money will be used to replace docks B, C, and D. Construction starts this September, and should be done by March 2009.