Mayor Bissen announces timeline for phased reopening of West Maui to visitors
KAHULUI (HawaiiNewsNow) - Maui Mayor Richard Bissen on Wednesday announced the timeline for a phased reopening of West Maui to visitors beginning Oct. 8.
“Six weeks ago, we focused on searching for unaccounted loved ones and supporting the safety and health of survivors,” Bissen said, in a statement.
“As we take careful steps forward in an unprecedented disaster, addressing our West Maui visitor industry, their employees, and the local businesses that work in conjunction with the industry requires planning that will get us to a manageable reopening.”
The mayor announced the following timeline for visitors:
- Beginning on Oct. 8
- Ritz-Carlton, Maui Kapalua to Kahana Villa
- To begin following an assessment of phase 1 reopening
- Mahinahina to Maui Kaanapali Villas
- To begin following an assessment of phase 2 reopening
- With the majority of displaced residents in this area, this will be the last phase to allow for more time to address housing options
- Royal Lahaina Resort to the Hyatt Regency
Gov. Josh Green set Oct. 8 — two months to the day since the Lahaina disaster — as the reopening day for West Maui tourism, but he has stressed that the reboot will be slow.
Some have pushed back against the idea of welcoming tourists back as disaster recovery continues.
But he pledged that the reopening won’t displace some 8,000 evacuees staying at area hotels.
Bissen said the phased reopening will provide a more deliberate process in helping displaced residents with their housing needs as well as the opportunity for residents to return to work and help their keiki settle into temporary schools.
Much of Lahaiana itself remains off limits, though a limited number of residents have been allowed to return to their properties this week.
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