Maui residents excited about ‘locals-only hours’ to begin at certain beach parks

Visitors may soon have to pay to park at popular Maui destinations.
Published: Oct. 10, 2022 at 6:42 PM HST|Updated: Oct. 11, 2022 at 5:31 AM HST
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KIHEI (HawaiiNewsNow) - Starting as early as spring, visitors will have to pay to park at Ulua Beach and the Kamaole Beach Parks in South Maui.

Residents with a valid Hawaii State Driver’s License who register with the Maui Resident Program will have free parking there at all times. In addition, only residents will be allowed to park there from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.

“One of the survey questions that we had during the community meetings was whether or not state zip codes should be eligible, or whether or not only County of Maui zip codes should be eligible,” said Park Maui consultant Julie Dixon.

Dixon said that is one of the details that still needs to be decided in the new PARK MAUI program.

During the second phase of the project, tourists will also have to pay to park in Lahaina Town and Wailuku Town.

Residents will have one to two hours of free parking and or discounted parking in those towns.

“There are some people who don’t feel like that tourists should be charged for parking and it doesn’t really show aloha to visitors, but I think around the world and all over the United States people are used to paying for parking,” said Maui beach access advocate Kai Nishiki.

PARK MAUI must also choose a parking operator and that price tag will then determine the fees. Dixon said it will fluctuate between anywhere between $10 to $30.

“Peak season versus non-peak hours, things like that, and then depending on location,” she said.

Maui’s Department of Transportation will get the money.

“In some cases, it could be different improvements within the towns,” Dixon said. “Could be lighting, it could be signage, could be poles, can be potholes, you name it.”

“There’s always a need for improvements of our parks,” Nishiki said. “A lot of our residents always say our parks aren’t in the best condition, they’d like to see our bathrooms being really nice and clean.”

If all goes well, PARK MAUI hopes to launch by late spring or early summer.