Opponents of controversial Waimanalo development claim project has been scrapped

Published: Dec. 20, 2019 at 9:16 AM HST
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HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - Opponents of a controversial development project in Waimanalo say an agreement has been reached to scrap the plan.

“I can say today that the mayor has agreed and has authored draft proposals, a resolution to nullify its master plan in its entirety. So, there will be no sports field at Sherwood Forest,” said Kū'ike Kamakea-Ohelo, president of Save Our Sherwoods.

Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell is currently out of town and could not be reached for comment and his spokesman would not confirm the deal.

The update was announced at a public meeting in Waimanalo Thursday night and a round of applause erupted.

The meeting was aimed to update the community on the Waimanalo Bay Beach Park master plan.

Kamakea-Ohelo did not have copies of the draft proposal, but said he saw it in writing.

If he is right, it is a huge victory for the protesters who have been fighting to stop the athletic field, playground and parking lot that is already under construction.

In September, 28 people were arrested for blocking construction crews and equipment.

On Wednesday, 11 of those cases were dismissed.

“Following the arrests, we were blessed enough that we won the heart of Chief Ballard, the chief of police,” Kamakea-Ohelo said. “It is simply because of Chief Ballard and the HPD who were on the ground who believed in us and our cause.”

But not all Waimanalo residents are on board with the so-called victory.

“When you guys say community, you guys are forgetting about us,” Sione Tuifua said.

Tuifua is a football coach in Waimanalo who was looking forward to a new place for kids sports.

“Where was everybody five years ago? 10 years ago? You drive in there, there’s a whole community that lives in there. They’re urinating, they’re doing drugs. I don’t understand what you guys are fighting for,” Tuifua said.

Both opponents and supporters are anxious get the mayor on the record with his new plan for the community.

The mayor’s spokesman said the mayor will be back in town at the end of the month.

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