May 2002 Home   Newsletters

August 2002

September 2002 - Know Your Candidates

President's Message
Annie Kim Honored at a Festive Luncheon
Voter Service League's Fall Priority
City Council Questionnaire to Be Sent to All Candidates
Honolulu League Participates in National Online Voter Information Service
Candidate Information
Box Lunch Meeting
So What Happened to All That Water We Thought We Had?
Planning Committee Report (Charles Carole & Pearl Johnson)

Planning Committee Report

The General Plan for Oahu adopted in 1977 and last amended in 1992 calls for full development of the Primary Urban Center (PUC) and for encouragement of development within the secondary urban center of Kapolei. Ewa and Central Oahu were designated urban-fringe areas which would receive development so as to relieve pressures on the remaining urban-fringe and rural areas.

In the intervening ten years, Central Oahu has seen explosive growth with an additional 11,870 housing units already approved. Because Central Oahu contains the best agricultural land on the island, the League has contended that further growth should be directed to the second city at Kapolei.

Now before the City Council is a proposal to amend the General Plan population distribution policies. At the Council hearing on July 17, we presented the following testimony:

The League of Women Voters has long supported a directed growth policy for Oahu. We applaud the efforts of the Department of Planning and Permitting to refine and update the population distribution policies as set forth in its April 29, 2002 communication.

However, we fear that Policy I's term `full development" of the Primary Urban Center may be taken to mean over-development and congestion. In view of the fact that the PUC actually shrank by over 12, 000 people from 1990 to 2000, we think that "moderate growth " would be a more realistic and desirable term. This would allow for infill of the PUC.

In addition, Policy 2's equating of Central Oahu with Ewa is mistaken. Ewa is close to the second city of Kapolei. Furthermore, Central Oahu has much of Oahu's prime agricultural land. Already 11,870 additional housing units have been approved for Central Oahu. Encouragement of development in Central Oahu would only mean further loss of prime agricultural land and the DIScouragement of our fastest growing industry, diversified agriculture. We therefore urge that Policy 2 be changed to encourage development only within the secondary urban center, at Kapolei, and the Ewa urban fringe areas.

Following the public testimony, the City Council Planning Committee reported out Resolution 02-205 CD-1, Amending the Population Distribution Policies of the General Plan of the City and County of Honolulu. The amended resolution as CD- 1, provides a table for the year 2025 of the percentage distribution of Oahu's residential population by the eight development plan areas (Primary Urban Center, Ewa, Central Oahu, East Honolulu, Koolaupoko, Koolauloa, North Shore and Waianae). The main differences between the original resolution and CD-1 are that the year 2025 percentage distribution of the PUC population is reduced from 48% to 46% and Ewa distribution increases from 11 % to 13%. This small change in the residential population distribution is moving slowly toward the League position that the Primary Urban Center should have moderate growth and Central Oahu should have less growth.

But, the City's actions and actual construction do not even conform with the current City General Plan. The League must continue monitoring the City's future actions to point out similar flaws and encourage the proper direction of future growth.

Pearl Johnson
Charles Carole


May 2002 Home   Newsletters September 2002 - Know Your Candidates