Problems plague Moanalua Stream

Gary Okino
Gary Okino

Problems plague Moanalua Stream

By Mari-Ela David - bio | email

MOANALUA, Oahu (KHNL) - It's a magnet for crime. Residents say the Moanalua Stream is attracting a dangerous crowd, and is a growing safety hazard for kids.

From vandalism to trash and crime - residents say they're tired of problems at the Moanalua Stream.

"He beat her from her car all the way, chased her stopped, beat her again stopped on the street, beat her again," said Moanalua resident Charlene Smythe.

Toward Mahiole Street, Smythe says the area above the stream turns into a party spot at night.

"It's completely dark, can't see anything so this is a haven for them to come in and drink," she said.

Another safety concern is overgrowth clogging up the stream.

"What happens is the pillars, it builds up and then we have to call them to clean it up because if there's another flood, it holds back the water," said Smythe.

Residents say that puts kids in danger. Moanalua Middle School and Moanalua Elementary School students use the stream as a shortcut. Part of the problem is both the city and the state own the stream. The clean side is the city's, the messy side is the state's.

"We've been putting money into maintaining the stream, millions of dollars, so I guess that shows but stateside, residents just have to keep after the state people," said Honolulu Councilmember Gary Okino.

State leaders say they have been trying clear the rubbish and have before and after pictures of the most recent clean-up, which was in June.

Representative Lynn Finnegan says money is an issue. She is currently looking for funds to maintain the stream long-term.

But the state can only clean the slopes of the stream. Finnegan says crews are not allowed to go down in the water. Under federal law, equipment is banned in the stream to protect wildlife.