On July 6, 2010, the Hawaii Kai Marina Community Association (HKMCA) held a meeting at the Mariner’s Cove Bay Club to brief owners/residents of Mariner’s Cove on their proposed plans to improve property adjacent to Mariner’s Cove and make it into a yard for storage of boat trailers. This summary was written by Elizabeth Reilly and Jo Ann Kocher, based on their notes and recollection of the meeting. It is intended to inform those owners who could not attend the meeting. If you were present at the meeting and wish to add or disagree with something in the summary, please feel free to do so in this same forum thread. The contents of this summary do not reflect an endorsement or opinion of the Mariner’s Cove Bay Club Association, which has not taken a position on the matter.
The meeting was convened at 7:04 p.m. by Elizabeth Reilly who explained the purpose was to provide information about the planned boat trailer yard. This meeting was not intended to be the public meeting required of the HKMCA as part of the city’s Department of Planning and Permitting approval process for their plan. Approximately 30 Mariner’s Cove homeowners attended, along with Gary Weller, from the Hawaii Kai Neighborhood Board, Glenn Nii, a farmer from Kamilonui Valley and Rich Turbin, who is running for City Council. The HKMCA was represented by Steve Carr, President, Carl Johnsen, HKMCA board of director’s member, Laurie Kimura, the project architect, and Bob Silverstein, a Mariner’s Cove homeowner and member of the HKMCA BOD.
Steve Carr began the presentation by explaining there are three parcels of land in Mariner’s Cove that have been deeded to the HKMCA by Kamehameha Schools. These are the three (3) waterfront parcels along Kalanipuu Street (one parcel) and Niumalu Loop (two parcels). These are also referred to as view lots. The land being proposed as a boat trailer storage area has also been deeded to the HKMCA. This property is located mauka of Mariner’s Cove and is known as Marina Parcel 3 (MP3). If you take Kamilo Street to the road that leads to the farms and go left, it is a waterfront property on the left before reaching the area referred to as the spillway, which is situated before the crossroad (Kamilonui Place) that goes to the farms. It is directly opposite approximately four (4) Mariner’s Cove homes on Niumalu Loop.
Carl Johnsen then explained that MP3, which is approximately 2 ½ acres, was deeded to the HKMCA for a specific use – marina maintenance. Though the property is presently zoned R7.5 (zoning allows for a limited number of residential homes to be built), the deed restriction in place by Kamehameha Schools specifically states that the land must be used for marina maintenance, such as a location to deposit dredge material and haul it away when needed. Dredging of the marina is done approximately every ten (10) years. The HKMCA indicated it wants to move forward with its plans for a storage yard as they believe Kamehameha Schools may take the MP3 property back if it is not used. Elizabeth Reilly later stated that was hearsay and that she believes Kamehameha Schools has no plans to do that.
Pertinent factors presented by Mr. Johnsen, who prefaced his remarks with the phrase, “At this time..” are:
- The yard would be used for the storage of trailers only – no boats will be allowed.
- They plan to improve the present landscaping along the water. A fence is already in place along the roadside.
- The boat ramp presently there will be modified so that it cannot be used to move boats into the water. It was later added that the HKMCA patrol boats may be able to use this ramp for official purposes.
- The HKMCA expects there would be light traffic to and from the yard as members would need prior permission to remove or store their trailers.
- The present plan does not call for any lighting on the site but there will be electrical power. It was later stated that, if necessary, security lighting might be installed but it would not be obtrusive.
- There will be access to water but no sewer access on the site.
- It is estimated that there would be room for 43 boat trailers.
- Only HKMCA members could use the facility.
Several questions were generated as a result of Mr. Johnsen’s presentation:
Question: Have plans for access to the boat trailer yard through Mariner’s Cove (mainly via Kamilo Street) changed?
Question: Why isn’t the possible Hawaii Kai Yacht Club site (also owned by the HKMCA and on the other side of the marina) being explored for the trailer storage area?
Answer: It may be used as a Yacht Club in the future.
Question: Where do you plan to place dredge material, when you dredge, if MP3 is used as a boat trailer storage facility?
Answer: At this time, the land belonging to the HKMCA located at the front of Hawaii Kai may be used. That can be decided later.
Question: There is a 90 left turn off Kamilo Street onto the road to MP3. Certain large boat trailers will not be able to make that turn.
Answer: The HKMCA will look into that but does not think it will be a problem.
Question: What will the hours of operation be?
Answer: For now, the hours are daytime only – probably 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Questions: Graffiti is prevalent back in that area and vandalism might be an issue. How will the HKMCA address that?
Answer: The association may put lights or some other type of security there.
Question: Why not include boats, not just trailers, in the storage facility?
Answer: A higher level of security and more maintenance would be required.
Owner and member of the HKMCA Chuck Johnston read a statement from an engineer why the storage yard is a poor idea – Mariner’s Cove was planned as a dead end community, not a thoroughfare for trailers. He suggested opening Hawaii Kai Drive from the Post Office side. It should be noted that Mariner’s Cove homeowners who have property on the marina are required to be members of the HKMCA.
Gary Weller questioned the electrical capability of the site. The answer was little electricity was needed because no maintenance will be allowed there, at this time.
Owner and moderator Elizabeth Reilly asked why the plans for the storage yard are going forward now. What is the urgency? The HKMCA replied it was to get some trailers off the street. They further stated that anyone in the 96825 zip code can apply to be a member of the HKMCA and, upon payment of dues, request to put their trailer in the lot. However, there is no guarantee there will be room. The HKMCA office is constantly asked about boat and trailer storage and they have a wait list of over 75 names for this service.
Laurie Kimura, then addressed the group. As a result of an earlier question, she stated the HKMCA had another site which is appropriately zoned, referred to as the Hawaii Kai Yacht Club, and that the association did look at that site for the trailer storage yard. It was rejected because it was believed that the changes needed would be much more expensive. Ms. Kimura stressed MP3 is not intended to be an area where boats can be put in or out of the water, like Hancock’s Landing. The HKMCA sent out letters to the Mariner’s Cove owners who would be most affected by the trailer facility, mainly the adjoining neighbors and stressed the association wants to be good neighbors. Ms. Kimura stated that one owner responded in a favorable manner.
Ms. Kimura explained the association plans to seek a variance to the residential zoning presently applied to the property.
Elizabeth Reilly asked if there are other plans the HKMCA may have for the property and the answer was no. She further asked why the HKMCA would not go for a zoning change so the zoning matches the use and noted the variance would trigger the need to prove hardship to the Department of Planning and Permitting. She asked what their hardship would be since the association already has land (in the front of the marina) that is appropriately zoned for this type of use. Mr. Carr replied it was their property and they wished to improve it.
The major issues of concern to the Mariner’s Cove owners present were the traffic that would be generated by persons driving their trailers to and from the site and the possibility of obtrusive lighting being added in the future, affecting the neighboring Cove homes. Owner Bob Rocheleau also asked how Cove owners can be assured that commercial enterprises, such as the boats used by tourists at Koko Marina, would not eventually be allowed to use the facility. The HKMCA replied members of the association and residents of zip code 96825 would have first priority (in that order). However, commercial enterprises are members of the HKMCA.
Owner Ellen Johnston asked how much the association intends to spend on the project and the answer was $100,000. She commented that $100,000 seemed like a lot of money to satisfy the trailer storage needs of only 43 HKMCA members and at the expense of the residents of Mariner’s Cove.
Elizabeth Reilly asked if the HKMCA had or would consider working with Leolani, the community near the post office, to open up Hawaii Kai Drive and allow access to the trailer yard via that route instead of Mariner’s Cove. The answer was they had not but would consider it. The other alternative is to work with the owners of the proposed cemetery in Kamilonui Valley to open up Hawaii Kai Drive from the Lunalilo Home Road side through to the trailer storage site. That property is owned by the cemetery corporation. Elizabeth volunteered to work with both entities and the HKMCA to explore the possibilities.
The next steps in the process are:
- HKMCA is to finalize the documents for the variance to be presented to the Department of Planning and Permitting. Ms. Kimura estimates that will take about two (2) months.
- Hold a public hearing for all interested parties. Mr. Carr said it would be in the Hawaii Kai area but no date or place has been set for it yet.
The HKMCA invited persons with questions to contact them at their office. Their website is http://www.hawaiikaimarina.com/and contains their location and telephone numbers.
The meeting concluded at 8:58 p.m.
Since the meeting, Mr. Carr has advised that the HKMCA will not consider other means of access to MP3. If the use of MP3 is approved as a boat trailer storage facility, the boat trailers will use the streets of Mariner’s Cove to access MP3.
This summary is being posted on the Mariner’s Cove website forum so that all interested parties may read it, ask questions or make comments. If you wish to do so, please post your question(s) or comment(s) no later than Sunday, July 18 so that all feedback can be forwarded to the HKMCA and the Department of Planning and Permitting as soon as possible. Please keep your questions and comments in the same forum thread. If you wish to contact Elizabeth Reilly directly, instead of using the forum, you may do so by e-mailing her at email@example.com.
As stated previously, the approval of the Mariner’s Cove Bay Club Association or the owners in Mariner’s Cove is not required for this plan to progress. However, our voices, for or against the plans of the HKMCA, can be submitted for consideration by city officials who make the final determination.