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VISION FOCUSES ON EDUCATION AND PRESERVATION
MAYOR COMES TO KA`U TO MAKE ANNOUNCEMENT
– WATCH VIDEO FROM MAYOR’S SPEECH ON YOUTUBE
– MAYOR’S VISION DOES NOT INCLUDE HOUSING PROJECT
– SPEECH COMES 2 DAYS AFTER THE MALAMA PUNALU`U FESTIVAL
Hawaii Island Mayor Harry Kim announced his vision for Punalu`u at the Ka`u Chamber of Commerce meeting at the Pahala Community Center, Sept 4th. He said he waited to announce his vision for Punalu`u so it would not influence the people of Ka`u. His vision described “a place of learning” located between the two national parks in Ka`u at Volcano and Kahuku.
He described it as a dream and hoped the right developer would be found that would work with the community to create it.
WATCH VIDEO FROM MAYOR’S SPEECH ON YOUTUBE
You can watch the video of the Mayor announcing his vision of Punalu`u on YOUTUBE:
MAYOR’S VISION DOES NOT INCLUDE HOUSING PROJECT
In the speech, the Mayor DID NOT include a housing project as part of his “vision” for Punalu`u. This is in direct contrast to the Sea Mountain Development that calls for over 1,000 luxury homes.
The Mayor said his vision was inspired by a trip to Crater Lake National Park. According to the Crater Lake National Park Website, “Crater Lake National Park has been recommended as a wilderness preserve, a place where we may forget ourselves for a time and enjoy a surge of healthy outdoor exploration. Here, we may rediscover ourselves and learn that material things do not necessarily constitute our richest possessions. This blue gem of the Cascades certainly moves us deeply when we imagine the awesome power which created this wonderful place.” The park is also home to Crater Lake Lodge, a small 71 room hotel and dining room, a camp store and laundry facility, 2 campgrounds with 225 sites and a small motor lodge, located 7 miles from the lake.
SPEECH COMES 2 DAYS AFTER THE MALAMA PUNALU`U FESTIVAL
The Mayor’s speech came just 2 days after the Malama Punalu`u Festival that helped raise awareness about Punalu`u and the potential for an educational center there. Over 2,000 people attended the event each day. It was one of the largest festivals ever held in Ka`u.
Ka`u Preservation’s vision for Punalu`u, like the Mayor’s is focused on education and preservation. The vision comes from Ka`u Preservation Founder, Keolalani Hanoa. Keola’s vision includes a cultural center and open air market showcasing local art and products, but does not include ANY hotels in order to protect Punalu`u’s fragile ecosystem and sacred sites. Instead, it calls for a “world-class” educational center or “living classroom” where guests and students would camp at Punalu`u and enjoy educational programs in a unique outdoor setting. Some Ka`u residents have suggested putting small locally owned hotels in Pahala and Na`alehu to provide lodging for visitors to Punalu`u and the National Park. The hotels in Na`alehu and Pahala and the Educational and Cultural Center at Punalu`u could provide hundreds of jobs for Ka’u residents while protecting the sacred lands of Ka`u.
phone: (808) 928-8144