Contact Us Subscribe
With Permission / Courtesy of: City and County of Honolulu Neighborhood Commission Office

Downtown / Chinatown Neighborhood Board No. 13

 

June 2022 Minutes

 

DRAFT REGULAR MEETING MINUTES

TUESDAY, JUNE 7, 2022

6:00 P.M. HYBRID

Mission Memorial Auditorium

CALL TO ORDER: Chair Laura Sturges called the Downtown-Chinatown Neighborhood Board No. 13 meeting to order at 6:00 p.m. Quorum was established with nine (9) members present. Note: This nine-member Board requires five (5) members to establish quorum and to take official Board action.

Members Present: Robert Armstrong, Ernest Caravalho, Sean Fitzsimmons, Ara Laylo, Kevin Lye, Kevin McDonald, Lori McCarney, Chu Lan Shubert-Kwock, and Laura Sturges.

Members Absent: None.

Guests: Firefighter Kirk Williams (Honolulu Fire Department); Mayor Rick Blangiardi; Managing Director Michael Formby, Chamara Silva; Don Murphy (Murphy's Bar & Grill); Patrick Seguirant, Chris Flaherty, Kali Watson (‘Ikenakea Development); Mary Finley (Red Cross Hawai'i); Councilmember Carol Fukunaga, Lynell Yuu; Senator Karl Rhoads; Layce Yamauchi (Representative Saiki's Office); Greg Payton (Mental Health Kokua); Lee Stack (Chinatown Improvement District); Harry Cho (Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation); Patrick Watson (Honua Consulting Company); Nicole Reid (The Manifest); Joli Tokusato (Unite Here Local 5); Traci Toguchi, Chad Wolke, Rick Keene, Kirstin Downey, Alicia Ruelke, Keegan Flaherty, Deborah Ward, Ikaika Hussey, Lloyd White, Maria Roth-Tijerina, Chance Na'auao-Ota, Alicia Salta (Residents); Executive Secretary Lloyd Yonenaka, Deputy Dylan Whitsell, Travis Saito, and Dylan Buck (Neighborhood Commission Office). There were 68 total attendees.

PUBLIC SAFETY REPORTS

Honolulu Fire Department (HFD): Firefighter Williams reported the following.

• May 2022 Statistics: There were two (2) wildland/brush fires, five (5) nuisance fires, seven (7) activated alarms (no fire), 117 medical emergencies, one (1) motor vehicle collision with pedestrian, and two (2) motor vehicle collisions, and one (1) hazardous materials incident.

• Safety Tip: Wildland fires are upon us, exercise extreme caution when utilizing flame-producing devices. Visit https://fire.honolulu.gov/ to learn more.

Honolulu Police Department (HPD): No representative present.

NEW BUSINESS / PRESENTATIONS

Update on the City's ‘Chinatown Action Items': Mayor Rick Blangiardi and Managing Director Michael Formby presented the following 2022-2023 City and County of Honolulu Chinatown Action Items:

• Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR):

o Plant new, hardier trees in select mid-block tree wells. (ON-GOING)

o Repair pavers in pedestrian malls, trim tree roots causing uplifts and reset trees. (ON-GOING)

o Continue to wash pavers using hand equipment. (ON-GOING)

o Conduct community engagement and planning study for activation of Smith-Beretania Park (i.e., suggestion for pickle ball courts). (NEW)

• Department of Transportation Services (DTS):

o Improvements to Chinatown Gateway Parking & Marin Tower municipal parking facility. (ON-GOING)

o Improvements to Kekaulike Street (Mall), including storm water management, trees and pavers, with lighting and way-finding signage: (ON-GOING)

EA completed;

Final design for Phase 1 (Hotel to King Street) 90% complete;

FY23 Design will be completed, with construction commencing Feb 2023.

o New 10-Year concession contract(s) for parking public facilities pursuant to Resolution 21-254 (adopted 12/21): (NEW)

Prepare a parking management plan 90 days after the contract execution;

Due to the nature of the concession, the concessionaire is incentivized to promote the use of the facility;

Display signage about parking lot capacity;

Publish a publicly available RESTful API that provides both dynamic real time and historic parking availability (total capacity and current occupancy) and facility details at the facility for the entire period of the concession.

• Department of Design and Construction (DDC):

o Rehabilitation of Streets Project (12 Streets) and Pauahi Street Curb Extensions. (ON-GOING)

Completion of finish work on Queen and Pauahi, correction of grouting around pavers and warning mats for disabled pedestrians.

o Rehabilitation of Hotel Street. (ON-GOING)

Concrete portion to be reconstructed; funding anticipated in FY23.

o Access controls, including security cameras, for Chinatown Police Station. (ON-GOING)

o Chinatown Police Station energy efficiency and service upgrades. (ON-GOING)

o Completion of Sun Yat Sen park renovations. (ON-GOING)

Forecasted for completion in October 2022.

• Department of Land Management (DLM):

o Facility improvement projects at the following properties (as funds permit): (ON-GOING)

Chinatown Gateway Plaza

• Repair water feature leaks; construction projected commencing August 2022.

Harbor Village

• Finalize renovation plans for atrium area and complete spalling repairs with construction projected commencing September 2022.

Marin Tower

• A/C repairs; plans under review with construction commencing upon approval of plans - estimated July 2022.

Chinatown Manor

• Routine on-going repair and maintenance projects.

o For vacant City-owned properties in Chinatown, evaluate potential alternative uses including, but not limited to, incubator spaces. (NEW)

o Prepare a solicitation for a mixed-use arts and cultural facility that will contribute to the historic Chinatown District's culture and character, as well as engage the community through robust and diverse art and cultural community programming. (ON-GOING)

RFP projected for issuance August 2022.

• Department of Facility Maintenance (DFM):

o Provide SPO/SNO enforcement, as necessary. (ON-GOING)

o Continue Chinatown cleanliness efforts, including daily rubbish pickup throughout Chinatown and graffiti removal from City buildings/property. (ON-GOING)

o Continue bi-weekly sidewalk pressure washing on Tuesdays and Thursdays. (ON-GOING)

o Increase pressure washing/manual sweeping in Chinatown/Downtown. (NEW)

Fill "Clean Team" vacancies.

o Retrofit light fixtures at College Walk and River Street Malls in Chinatown with new, energy-efficient LED lights. (NEW)

o Retrofit storm water catch basins with Automatic Retractable Screens (ARS) and repair the front nose of the catch basins, targeting 120 installations in 2022. (ON-GOING)

o Inspect and repair sidewalks, targeting 26,000 ft2 of sidewalk repairs in 2022. (ON-GOING)

• Office of Housing and Homelessness (HOU):

o Conduct a post 1-year community survey focusing on Chinatown residents and business owners' perceptions, quality of life, and area issues and concerns. (NEW)

Target of ~400 responses from Chinatown businesses, residents, and visitors during fourth quarter 2022 and draft a report of the findings by Jan 2023.

o Working with C.O.R.E., provide a one-year report with data on populations served and lessons learned in the Chinatown area. (NEW)

o Support Chinatown/‘A‘ala Park transformation efforts. (ON-GOING)

• Honolulu Police Department (HPD):

o Maintain sustained, increased level of law enforcement presence on the streets of Chinatown (through 12/22). (ON-GOING)

o Increased enforcement against targeted illegal activity in Chinatown. (ON-GOING)

Weed and Seed program is on-going with Prosecutors seeking immediate charging and high bails for criminal offenders in Chinatown.

o Installation of Chinatown security camera network. (ON-GOING)

Proposed expansion of security camera network to 52 locations. (NEW)

• Mayor's Office of Culture and Arts (MOCA):

o Beautify Chinatown through an increase in public art installations. (NEW)

o Increase the number of recurring, community-driven, public events to encourage additional foot traffic in Chinatown. (NEW)

o Consider a dedicated special events area within Chinatown or its periphery to streamline the permitting and approval for special events in Chinatown. (NEW)

Questions, comments, and concerns followed.

1. Unruly Crowd: Lye presented images of an unruly crowd that gathered in Downtown-Chinatown on Sunday, May 15, 2022 around 2:00 a.m. Lye noted that the crowd was taking over the road, dancing in the street, climbing on top of buildings, and playing very loud music. Mayor Blangiardi encouraged Lye to present these findings to HPD, and commented that the actions taken by this crowd are unacceptable.

2. Investigations: Lye asked and Mayor Blangiardi responded that his staff would indeed investigate reports of failure of City employees to follow statutes within the Revised Charter Ordinances of Honolulu. McDonald commented that this Board, as well as others, experience dysfunction that he thinks stems from the Neighborhood Commission Office (NCO) and asked if anybody is investigating the NCO. Mayor Blangiardi responded that he needs more information on the matter, and noted that this is the first time he has heard of any dysfunction at the NCO.

3. Gratitude: Armstrong expressed his gratitude towards Mayor Blangiardi for his focus on Downtown-Chinatown.

4. Catch & Release: McDonald raised his concerns with the spike in crime nationwide, commenting that criminals are released shortly after being caught with no real punishment, and added that the lack of punishment for criminals is not helping the community.

5. Pigeon Outbreak: Shubert-Kwock commented that the Downtown-Chinatown community has been experiencing a pigeon outbreak. Lye presented images of large groups of pigeons in different parts on the community.

6. Metered Parking Rates: Shubert-Kwock noted that the previous administration doubled the metered parking rates to $1.50 per half hour, and requested that the metered parking stalls in the community be reduced to the same price as the public parking garages which is 75 cents per half hour. Mayor Blangiardi responded that he will look into that request.

7. Sun Yat-Sen Park: Caravalho thanked Mayor Blangiardi and Managing Director Formby for their efforts to clean up Sun Yat-Sen Park because he has witnessed the improvements made, and added that his work with the Lions Club will continue to improve the park because there are still many issues relating to homeless individuals who break laws. Mayor Blangiardi responded by thanking Caravalho for taking action through the Lions Club and encouraged the public to take pride in their community because it is a team effort.

8. Increase in Gun Violence: Laylo asked for the Mayor's opinion on the growing public health crisis in our nation with gun violence and Mayor Blangiardi responded that it is unprecedented. Mayor Blangiardi commented that Hawaii is a model when it comes to gun laws because of the strict laws already in place and there is some solace in that. Mayor Blangiardi added that public safety is of paramount importance to this administration.

9. Supporting the Arts Community: Laylo noted Chinatown's long history of supporting the Arts community and invited Mayor Blangiardi's wife to organize a town hall meeting where she could benefit from hearing from her constituents and getting input on what the culture of Chinatown really looks like in its history. Mayor Blangiardi responded that he will follow up with Laylo on this.

10. HPD Misuse of Overtime Funds: Fitzsimmons commented on the recent reports of HPD's misuse of overtime funds and asked how we reconcile the need for increased police presence with these concerns. Mayor Blangiardi responded that he cannot defend HPD's misuse of those funds, leadership changes have been made, and added that Managing Director Formby was able to secure $2,500,000 in federal funds in order to increase the police presence by 28 officer per day seven (7) days a week. Fitzsimmons asked how we discipline those officers who we need so desperately and Mayor Blangiardi responded that Fitzsimmons should provide his testimony to the Honolulu Police Commission.

11. HART: Shubert-Kwock expressed her gratitude toward the new leadership at HART.

12. Rental Increase: Ward raised her concern with her recent rental increase of 10%, and noted that she had worked out an agreement with the previous property manager just before he was fired which certified her tenancy for one (1) year on a month-to-month basis. Mayor Blangiardi responded that Director Anton Krucky (Community Services - DCS) is available to speak with and asked her to send him an email at anton.krucky@honolulu.gov.

Murphy's Bar & Grill Schedule of Events: Don Murphy (Murphy's Bar & Grill) announced that he is asking for the Board's support of the temporary street closure of Merchant Street between Nuuanu Avenue and Bethel Street for Murphy's Bar & Grille to host four (4) separate fundraising events. The first event is for the Hawaii Children's Cancer Foundation Fundraiser on Saturday, June 18, 2022. The next event will be for the "Pig Skin Pig Out" to support the University of Hawaii's Football Program on Thursday, August 11, 2022, from 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. The third event will be for Hawai'i Literacy on Thursday, September 8, 2022, from 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. The last event will be the Ronald McDonald Gift Wrap Night on Wednesday, December 7, 2022 from 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.

Questions, comments, and concerns followed.

1. Clarification: Shubert-Kwock commented that she couldn't hear and asked Murphy to repeat his announcements.

2. Public Notice: Shubert-Kwock recommended that Murphy submit the details of these events and road closures in writing ahead of future meetings to the Board for public distribution. Lye echoed Shubert-Kwock's recommendation.

3. Incorrect Spelling: Lye apologized to Murphy for the error in his establishment's name on the agenda.

4. Event Size: Shubert-Kwock asked and Murphy responded that the anticipated attendance for these events range from 150 to 200 or more people.

Update on Hotel in Chinatown by ‘Ikenakea Development: Patrick Seguirant, Chris Flaherty, and Kali Watson presented the following updated information on the Chinatown Hotel Development project. Ikenakea Development is proposing to develop a hotel in Chinatown that will serve as an anchor for the community and catalyst for investment and redevelopment of the area. It will bring jobs, foot traffic, and tax revenues that have historically only benefited areas such as Ala Moana and Waikiki to Chinatown. Tourism revenues have disproportionately benefited other districts and this will shift some of that benefit to Chinatown where it will make a significant impact. This project will directly benefit our government through the Transient Accommodations Tax (TAT), property taxes, payroll taxes, and sales taxes. The proposed public benefits include: affordable housing contributions, historic structure preservation/renovation, Kekaulike Street improvements, car-sharing spaces, bike-sharing station, and increase in State and County revenues. ‘Ikenakea Development is requesting the following IPD-T exemptions: Exemption from LUO to exceed the maximum floor area without the required open space bonus, Exemption from LUO to exceed the maximum height, Exemption from LUO to encroach into the BMX-4 transition height setback, Exemption from LUO to provide less than the required loading, Exemption from LUO Makai Precinct objectives, and an Exemption from LUO Makai Precinct Height Setback to allow encroachment on Nimitz Frontage.

• Project Overview:

o Adjacent to the Chinatown HART Station and Nimitz Highway

o Caters to CBD, Capitol District, Aloha Tower, and leisure tourists staying outside of Waikiki

o Satisfies Key TOD directive to redevelop surface parking lots on Nimitz Highway

o Guestrooms: 240 rooms, average 300 square feet (SF)

o Parking: 125 stalls (valet only stackers)

o Sky Lobby: 13,000 SF

o Fitness Center: 1,200 SF

o Rooftop Restaurant: 3,300 SF

o Rooftop Pool and Deck: 10,000 SF

o Meeting Space: 4,000 SF

o Community Space: 12,000 SF

o Cost (Land & Development): $127,000,000

o New Jobs: Over 100 full time employees after opening, over 500 construction jobs

o Guests: Over 10,000 overnight guests and 150,000 restaurant patrons annually

Questions, comments, and concerns followed.

1. Congestion on Kekaulike Street: Shubert-Kwock raised concerns with the location of the car-sharing and bike-sharing stations because Kekaulike Street is very congested without the proposed stations.

2. Concerns Raised from July 2021 Meeting: Lye noted that the last presentation ‘Ikenakea Development provided to this Board was in July 2021 of which several residents that voiced their concerns and oppositions to this project. Lye questioned if the concerns raised have been suitably addressed. Flaherty responded that a concern raised previously was in regards to the height of an affordable housing tower, originally proposed to be 20-stories tall, and has now been reduced to six (6) stories to accommodate the community's concerns. Flaherty added that ‘Ikenakea Development has met with residents and business owners of the community to identify areas of concern and work towards solutions. Laylo echoed Lye's recollection of the concerns raised at the July 2021 meeting and encouraged to ‘Ikenakea Development to continue to listen to the community and recommended that the employees be paid a living wage.

3. Next Steps: Lye asked what the next steps are for the project, when additional funding will be secured, and how the projected completion dates will be affected. Flaherty

4. First Hotel in Hawai'i: Fitzsimmons asked and Flaherty responded that ‘Ikenakea Development is very active in the commercial retail center space and this would be their first hotel in Hawai'i. Flaherty added that ‘Ikenakea Development has hired a local management company (High Gate), who have 11 properties here in Hawai'i.

5. Affordable Housing: Fitzsimmons asked and Flaherty responded that ‘Ikenakea Development is currently pursuing the tax credits for the required 24-unit affordable housing project, but they would like to expand the project to over 52-units. Caravalho commented on the need for affordable housing and asked how ‘Ikenakea Development was able to secure the contract from the original contractors to reduce the height of the affordable housing project while building a much taller building for a hotel. Flaherty responded that the original affordable housing proposal was not approved and did not receive the appropriate funding to build a 20-story affordable housing project. Flaherty added that he believes ‘Ikenakea Development understands what proposal will get awarded from their experience of building over 1,000 units of affordable housing across the state. Watson added that ‘Ikenakea Development's specialty is affordable housing.

6. Mixed-Use Projects: Fitzsimmons commented on another mixed-use hotel development in the Chinatown area and asked if this project will also be mixed-use. Flaherty responded no, this project will be a typical hotel development with a coffee shop, bar, and a full-functioning rooftop restaurant.

7. In Support: McCarney commented on the benefits for the entire community by establishing a nice hotel in Chinatown and expressed her excitement of the bike-share stations as alternative means of transportation.

8. Timeline: McCarney asked and Flaherty responded that the timeline of the project depends on the entitlements, and gave a rough estimate that the project could be completed by December 2025 if everything goes according to plan.

9. Gratitude: Armstrong expressed his gratitude towards ‘Ikenakea Development for listening to the community and commented that this development is important for the growth and future of Chinatown.

10. Comparison to Waikiki: Caravalho raised his concerns with developer's intentions to change Chinatown into another Waikiki.

11. Publish the Presentation: Lye encouraged ‘Ikenakea Development to make their presentation available to the public for additional community input.

12. Competing Development: Lye noted the Marriott's hotel project on Bishop Street and asked how that project will affect this one. Flaherty responded that ‘Ikenakea Development knows of that project, the developers, and the owners, and noted that the Marriott's project is not full-service and offers less than half of the rooms that ‘Ikenakea Development's project offers.

13. Union Workers: Tokusato announced that she is representing Unite Here Local 5, the hotel workers union, and commented that Unite Here Local 5 is optimistic about this project and would like to learn more.

14. Height Limits: Stack recommended that the project remain within the height limits that were established for the national historic district. Seguirant responded that there is a Transit-Oriented Development (TOD) plan that was approved by City Council to extend the existing height limits of 80 feet to 200 feet for this particular area.

15. Defer Vote of Approval: Lye commented that there is no critical reason for the Board to take a vote on the approval of this project at this time.

Hurricane Readiness by Red Cross Hawai'i: Mary Finley (Senior Volunteer Recruitment Specialist - American Red Cross Pacific Islands Region) presented on the following disaster preparedness tips as we have entered into hurricane season (June 1 to November 30). The most important thing to do is to prepare enough food/water and an evacuation plan as needed. Finley stressed the need for interested people or groups to apply to be a Red Cross Volunteer, which requires training, and these trained volunteers will be able to assist their communities in the event of natural disasters.

Questions, comments, and concerns followed.

1. Contact Information: McCarney asked and Finley responded that any interested parties can reach out to her by calling (808) 284-6849 or emailing mary.finley@redcross.org

2. Gratitude: Lye noted that Finley originally reached out to the Board to provide a presentation on Monday, July 13, 2020 and thanked her for her presentation tonight.

3. Interruption: Shubert-Kwock apologized to Finley for the interruption of her presentation caused by a dispute between Armstrong and Shubert-Kwock, and announced that she will be filing a police report and a complaint with the Neighborhood Commission Office.

4. Tips: Laylo asked for any tips for the residents of Hawai'i regarding climate change as many residents live very close to the waterline. Finley responded that developers of commercial and residential properties should be mindful of the sea level rising and potential flood zones.

5. Make Copies of Personal Information: A resident commented on the importance of making copies of your personal information, such as account information and identification, and storing them in a safe deposit box because in the event of a natural disaster that information will be vital.

Kila Kalikimaka Mall nighttime closure & gate installation: Councilmember Carol Fukunaga presented to the Board in support of Kila Kalikimaka Mall nighttime closure hours and installation of gates to address the numerous complaints received regarding homeless camping and illegal activity in the area during nighttime hours. Councilmember Fukunaga requested the Board's support of the letter drafted by Councilmember Fukunaga, Senator Rhoads, and Representative Holt.

Questions, comments, and concerns followed.

1. Details: Lye asked if there is an overhead map available to get an idea of the footprint and if this is a gate-able area. Councilmember Fukunaga responded that it is a gate-able area and displayed an overhead view via google maps.

2. In Support: Shubert-Kwock commented in support of this proposal.

3. Concerns: McDonald commented that the area of concern already has nighttime closure hours in place that are ignored by the homeless individuals and not enforced by HPD, and raised concerns that this will set a precedence for the unnecessary need to install fencing everywhere in order to keep the homeless out. Councilmember Fukunaga responded that McDonald's concerns are valid, and that HPD does not have enough staff currently to enforce every area of concern.

Armstrong MOVED and Shubert-Kwock SECONDED the motion to support the nighttime closure hours of 10:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. and the installation of gates at Kila Kalikimaka Mall as proposed in the letter drafted by Councilmember Fukunaga, Senator Rhoads, and Representative Holt.

Discussion:

1. Temporary Solution: McCarney noted her support of the motion, but echoed McDonald's concerns that the solution cannot be to lock up every alley way and area in the community.

2. Future Plans to Reopen: Lye asked what the parameters will be for reopening the area in the future and Councilmember Fukunaga responded that the main goal for the enforcement of the nighttime closure hours is to ensure safety and security for residents and businesses in the area.

The Board took a roll vote. The motion PASSED; 8-1-0 (Aye: Armstrong, Caravalho, Fitzsimmons, Laylo, Lye, McCarney, Shubert-Kwock, Sturges; Nay: McDonald; Abstain: None)

Caravalho left the meeting at 8:11 p.m.; eight (8) members present.

PUBLIC CONCERNS

Hawaiian Electric Company (HECO) Announcement: Chair Sturges announced the following. Hawaiian Electric contractors will be upgrading underground utility equipment at the intersection of S. Pauahi and Bethel streets in the Chinatown area of Downtown Honolulu starting Wednesday, June 1, 2022 and continuing on multiple weekdays throughout June 2022. No weekend or holiday work is scheduled. There will be no scheduled power outages as a result of this work. The work will close both directions of S. Pauahi Street, between Nu uanu and Bethel streets, from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., except for local traffic: Wednesday, June 1, 2022 to Friday, June 3, 2022; Tuesday, June 7, 2022 to Thursday, June 9, 2022; Monday, June 13, 2022 to Friday, June 24, 2022 (excluding weekends); Monday, June 27, 2022 to Thursday, June 30, 2022.

Longs CVS Closing: Deborah Ward raised her concerns and disappointment with the closure of the Longs Drugs CVS Pharmacy location in Downtown on Thursday, June 9, 2022. Ward noted her efforts to encourage the business to remain open as it is an essential service to the community. Ward commented that the closure of this business appears to stem from the larger problem in the community of homelessness, criminality, and drug use. A resident responded by informing Ward that she can ask the Longs Drug CVS Pharmacy to subscribe her to CVS Caremark Prescription Mail Order Drug service so her prescriptions can be mailed directly to her home. Armstrong commented that one (1) speculation going around about this closure is focused on the need for more pharmacists.

ELECTED OFFICIALS

Governor David Ige's Representative: No representative present.

Mayor Rick Blangiardi's Representative: No representative present.

• Mayor's Newsletter: https://www.oneoahu.org/newsletter

Councilmember Carol Fukunaga (District 6): Councilmember Fukunaga already presented to the Board and deferred the remaining time of the meeting to the other agenda items.

Questions, comments, and concerns followed. Kamali'i Mini Park: Armstrong thanked Councilmember Fukunaga for following up on the issue of HFD's transfer of ownership of the Kamali'i Mini Park.

Senator Karl Rhoads (District 13): Senator Rhoads reported the following. Capital Improvement Project Budget funds for Fiscal Year 2023 include the following: $1 million for the Hawaii State Archives master plan to include expansion and creation of new collections processing and storage, public research, exhibition and community engagement spaces; $1 million for the State Capitol Building to renovate the information technology infrastructure and to improve telework capabilities for public employees; $2 million for Washington Place and Queen's Gallery to address immediate health and safety needs including hazardous material abatement and building code requirements, and preservation of historic materials; $6 million for the relocation of the Keawe Street Sheriff's Station to the Kalanimoku Building; $29.9 million for Honolulu Harbor improvements; $18 million for athletic complex improvements at McKinley High School; $1.5 million for ADA compliance at McKinley High School; and $1.4 million for painting of buildings and related improvements at McKinley High School. The number of Covid-19 cases is increasing again due to new strains of the virus and relaxed Covid-19 restrictions. I encourage you to get your shots and boosters and to continue wear masks inside even where you don't have to. To contact Senator Rhoads's Office call 808-586-6130 or email senrhoads@capitol.hawaii.gov

Representative Scott Saiki (District 26): Layce Yamauchi reported that Representative Saiki's report was submitted to the Board, highlighting a virtual town hall on Thursday, June 30, 2022 from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. regarding Condo Insurance, honoring our veterans, investing in our community, protecting student journalism, and crisis outreach response engagement. Use the following link to sign up for Representative Saiki's digital newsletter: https://hawaii.us19.list-manage.com/subscribe?u=381ee156cdf84d1aee40f7906&id=01d65e7d9a

Representative Daniel Holt (District 28): No representative present.

MONTHLY REPORTS

Board of Water Supply (BWS): No representative present.

Safe Haven: Greg Payton [gpayton@mhkhawaii.org] reported that the Mental Health Kokua (MHK) Safe Haven program, from January 2022 through May 2022, has placed 40 residentially challenged people suffering from mental health issues off the streets, plus the 25 individuals living at Safe Haven. MHK has discontinued their homeless drop-in center and activity center during the daytime, so there are no other people coming in and out of the building except those that live there. MHK typically places about 100 people off the streets per year. The Punawai Rest Stop in Iwilei currently serves about 240 people every day and about 2,500 unduplicated people per year.

Questions, comments, and concerns followed.

1. Bathrooms at Pauahi Rec Center: Shubert-Kwock asked and Payton responded that the bathrooms at the Pauahi Recreation Center are functioning properly.

2. Relocation Update: Lye asked and Payton responded that Safe Haven is working closely with the City to relocate by November 2022.

Chinatown Business Community Association (CBCA): Shubert-Kwock reported the following from the Tuesday, May 10, 2022 CBCA meeting. The meeting covered crime statistics with HPD and the Prosecutor's Office, the unfortunate death of an on-duty security guard, and the unfortunate event of a 79 year old man being lit on fire. CBCA thanks Councilmember Fukunaga for her outstanding service and dedication the community, and has been selected for a Lifetime Achievement Award on Saturday, October 22, 2022. 10 other individuals have been selected to receive Chinatown Heroes Awards for their selfless dedication and services to Chinatown. CBCA thanks Mayor Blangiardi and Managing Director Formby for keeping their promise to clean up Chinatown. The next CBCA meeting will be held on Tuesday, June 14, 2022 at 10:00 a.m. at Golden Palace.

Chinatown Improvement District (CID): Lee Stack reported the following. CID met with people at the Trust for Public Land (TPL) and brought to their attention CID's project to paint historical and cultural motifs along the sidewalk on River Street and the A'ala Park side of the stream. TPL is in the process of incorporating this idea into a sidewalk mural along A'ala Park where the sidewalk is fronting the stream. In 2023, it will be the 50 year anniversary of Chinatown being officially designated as a historic district and it would be beneficial to have an advocate within the City and County of Honolulu to preserve this district.

Neighborhood Citizen Patrol: Lye presented images and reported observations by the patrol during the prior month, including Lye inviting the public to walk with the patrol on the second Tuesday of every month, departing at 7:00 p.m. from the Diamond Head Tower lobby of Kukui Plaza. Please bring a friend, join the patrol, and help identify areas of concern within the community.

Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation (HART): Harry Cho and Patrick Watson reported the following. HART recently submitted its 2022 Recovery Plan (RP) to the Federal Transit Administration (FTA). The RP was required by the FTA to document HART's plans for the completion of the project within the amount of funding that is forecasted to be available. HART is confident that the RP will be approved by the FTA, and will enable the project to receive the remaining federal funding under the Full Funding Grant Agreement. The RP proposes a truncated project scope with an interim terminus at the Civic Center station, which is located at the intersection of South Street and Halekauwila Street, and the deferral of the Pearl Highlands Parking Garage. HART remains committed to the completion of the rail system to Ala Moana in a subsequent phase of the project. Cho recapped the following from the report provided at the last meeting: HART recently awarded a portion of the City's Center Utilities Relocation (CCUR) contract to the Frank V. Coluccio Construction Company (FVCCC). Construction is anticipated to begin in the Downtown-Chinatown area as early as mid-June 2022. The main objective of the contract is to perform the necessary utility relocation work that must be completed prior to construction of the future Guideways and Stations contract. HART requested that they be added to this Board's agenda for future meetings and they will be providing monthly updates. Watson (Public Information Manager at Honua Consulting Company - HCC) is representing FVCCC on the work that they are about to commence on the CCUR Phase III contract. Watson invited the public to attend HCC's second monthly CCUR Phase III Business and Community Meeting on Friday, June 17, 2022 at 6:00 p.m. via Zoom. Registration Link: https://bit.ly/HARTPhase3. Sign up for the CCUR III eBlast: http://eepurl.com/h1g2W5. You can also email ccur3@honuaconsulting.com for more information.

Questions, comments, and concerns followed. Embarrassment: McDonald commented that this is an embarrassment because HART not only failed to complete the approved rail system all the way to Ala Moana, it is also grossly over-budgeted at $14 billion. Cho responded that HART is committed to complete the rail system to Ala Moana as planned in a subsequent phase and the estimated cost of completion of the truncated scope to Civic Center is $9.14 billion (excluding financing costs), not $14 billion.



BOARD BUSINESS

Election of Board Secretary: Hearing no nominations, this item was deferred to the next meeting.

Red Hill Fuel Tanks Decommissioning - Resolution: Deferred to next meeting.

Motion to hold a one (1) hour State Representatives Candidate Forum at the Thursday, July 7, 2022 Initial Convening Meeting: Armstrong commented that his original idea for this forum was focused on State House (District 28) candidates only, and noted that he has prepared an agenda that the other candidates for State House (District 28) have agreed to. Neighborhood Assistant Buck commented that the Neighborhood Commission Office (NCO) encourages the Board to open this forum up to all State representatives who represent this community, to include State House (District 25) and State Senate (District 13).

Armstrong MOVED and Lye SECONDED the motion to hold a one (1) hour State Representatives Candidate Forum at the Thursday, July 7, 2022 Initial Convening Meeting.

Discussion:

1. Format: Lye asked for the roposed format and Armstrong responded that each candidate would be limited to two (2) minutes each for introductions, two (2) minutes each for a questions between candidates, and 30 minutes for the public to ask any questions to any or all candidates.

2. Change Date: Shubert-Kwock suggested that the candidate forum be held on a separate date outside of the Board's regularly scheduled meeting.

3. Concerns of Time Management: McDonald suggested that the candidate forum be held either before or after the regular meeting as to avoid limiting the regular meeting time from three (3) hours to two (2) hours.

4. Open to Suggestions: Armstrong commented that he is open to any proposals to hold the candidate forum at a different time and/or date.

Lye MOVED and Laylo SECONDED the amended motion to hold a one (1) State Representatives Candidate Forum, to include State Senate (District 13), State House (District 25) and State House (District 28), at the Thursday, July 7, 2022 Initial Convening Meeting from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. The Board took a roll call vote. The amended motion PASSED; 6-2-0 (Aye: Armstrong, Fitzsimmons, Laylo, Lye, McDonald, Sturges; Nay: McCarney, Shubert-Kwock; Abstain: None).

Sturges MOVED and McCarney SECONDED the motion to defer all remaining business to the next meeting. Hearing no objections, the motion PASSED by Unanimous Consent.

Approval of Regular Meeting Minutes: Thursday, December 2, 2021 & Thursday, May 5, 2022: Deferred to next meeting.

Treasurer's Report: Deferred to next meeting.

Oahu Metropolitan Planning Organization (OahuMPO) Citizen Advisory Committee (CAC): Deferred to next meeting.

Motion to amend something previously adopted: Cinco De Mayo Cultural Celebration Fundraiser Block Party: Deferred to next meeting.

Board Member Concerns: Deferred to next meeting.

Future Items for Board Consideration: Deferred to next meeting.

ANNOUNCEMENTS

Next Regular Meeting: The next Downtown - Chinatown Neighborhood Board meeting is scheduled for 6:00 p.m. on Thursday, July 7, 2022 at Mission Memorial Auditorium.

Rebroadcast: Rebroadcasts of Downtown-Chinatown Neighborhood Board 13 meetings are scheduled on ‘ lelo channel 49 every third Thursday at 9:00 p.m., as well as 6:00 a.m. on the second and fourth Saturdays of each month. An archive of past meetings may be found on https://olelo.org/olelonet/ upon searching on .

Neighborhood Citizen Patrol: The Downtown-Chinatown Neighborhood Citizen Patrol departs on the second Tuesday of each month at 7:00 p.m. from the Diamond Head tower lobby of Kukui Plaza. Please wear a mask, bring a friend, join the patrol, and help identify areas of concern within our Downtown-Chinatown community.

Archive: Find an archive of handouts and referenced materials apropos to Downtown-Chinatown Neighborhood Board 13 here.

ADJOURNMENT: The meeting was adjourned at 9:00 p.m.

Submitted by: Dylan Buck, Neighborhood Assistant

Reviewed by: Dylan Whitsell, Deputy

Finalized by: Laura Sturges, Chair

Like Our Facebook

  • RELATED LINKS

    Please send questions about this website to
    Copyright© 2006 - 2022 FirstFridayHawaii.com. All rights reserved.
    Terms of Use / Legal Disclaimer / Privacy Statement
    Site Designed and Managed by MacBusiness Consulting