Proposal requiring homes be built further from ocean on Oahu faces growing opposition
HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - A measure that would require new homes be built further from the shoreline on Oahu is moving forward but running into a lot of doubts.
Bill 41 would require new buildings be set back 60 and 130 feet from shore depending on the size and location of the property.
The current shoreline setback is 40 feet.
It would also impact current homeowners who want to rebuild or remodel, which could reduce the value of the property.
Naalehu Anthony testified against the bill in front of City Council Wednesday.
“The gift of equity from that property is the only way I was able to buy a home,” he said. “For the next coming my son including it will be increasingly difficult for us for him to be able to buy property.”
Architect Christian Eiserlow added, “It gives a one kind of shoe fits all setback for properties on the shoreline and as we know the island consists of a wide variety of topographies geologies and all types of ocean conditions, flood zones, etc.”
Dr. Chip Fletcher says the proposed changes are already in effect in other parts of the state.
“The setback that the City and County is considering has been in place for 20 years on the island of Maui and for something like 10 to 15 years on the island of Kauai,” he said.
But some feel Oahu is not ready for the dramatic shift.
The council’s vice chair Esther Kiaaina says she wants the city to consider more options.
She’s also pushing for more collaboration with the community before a final decision is made.
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