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Information from 8/27 meeting re cemetery in Kamilonui Valley Information from 8/27 meeting re cemetery in Kamilonui Valley

   Discussion: Information from 8/27 meeting re cemetery in Kamilonui Valley
Jo Ann Kocher · 10 years, 1 month ago

Elizabeth Reilly provided the following information from the meeting of August 27 re plans for the cemetery in Kamilonui Valley:

The Monday night cemetery meeting resulted in the conversation with the landowner focusing on a new request which is to allow the Hawaii Kai Marina to deposit the material they dredge on the cemetery site including additional top soil. The marina's dredge material would be 50,000 cubic yards and the trucks transporting this material will not go through the subdivision -
The landowner agreed to return in October / November with his planners and drawings to show their new land plan design for the cemetery. If you missed the KITV news segment click on this link
Discussion at the Monday night meeting included residents asking for a reconsideration for having the cemetery in Kamilo Nui Valley since City Council approved the plans 10 years ago and design plans are changing plus the natural topography of the land has be significantly altered. Further, an Environmental Assessment may have been completed but it was not confirmed so residents asked Councilmember Chang to look into this-
If you have any concerns or thoughts please contact your elected officials and the Hawaii Kai Neighborhood Board. Here is an article from the paper just in case you missed it.
Mahalo to resident Allen Tateishi for the meeting signs.
 Marina dredging might supply cemetery’s dirt
Work at a Hawai'i Kai site set to start next year could use fill from Mariner’s Cove

POSTED: 01:30 a.m. HST, Aug 29, 2012
Construction of a long-envisioned cemetery in Hawaii Kai is projected to begin next year, but there’s not enough dirt on the 69-acre site for burials, so a proposal has been made to haul in tons of fill dredged from the community’s marina.
The idea was announced at a Monday evening meeting with residents largely from the Mariner’s Cove neighborhood closest to the cemetery parcel at the back of Kamilo Nui Valley, raising new concerns mixed with some opposition and support over the controversial project.
Local attorney William McCorriston representing cemetery developer and landowner Hawaii Kai Memorial Park made the presentation to the group of about 30 people. He said the developer needs to import fill because the ground is a layer of rock with little topsoil.
“We have to bring it in from somewhere,” he said.
McCorriston said the Hawaii Kai Marina Community Association asked if the cemetery would take marina sediment — an estimated 50,000 cubic yards — from a needed dredging that has yet to begin.
Such an arrangement would reduce the association’s expense to haul sediment to some other more distant site, association director Rich Cheski said at the meeting.
The marina association has deposited material from previous dredging work on sites around the marina, including some small islands. But Cheski said the islands can take no more. Dumping it at sea is another option, but is expensive and raises environmental concerns.
“We have no place to put it,” he said. “This is a logical choice.”
In response to concerns raised by residents, Cheski said the sediment won’t smell bad and won’t have a negative environmental impact as cemetery fill.
McCorriston said an added benefit is alleviating a need to truck in an equal amount of fill from farther away, avoiding an estimated 2,500 truck trips in and out of the community.
Because dredged material would be transferred from a barge at the back of the marina to an adjacent lot at the base of the valley, only a few trucks would be needed to enter the community each day to make numerous short runs between the haul-out area and the cemetery site.
“The trucks are not going to go through the neighborhood,” McCorriston said.
Dump trucks traversing the Mariner’s Cove neighborhood created a contentious situation about nine months ago when Hawaii Kai Memorial Park arranged to have Grace Pacific Corp. deposit used asphalt, aggregate and base rock on the property.
Grace Pacific had a contract to repave roads in Hawaii Kai, and the cemetery developer wanted the material for use on the site as fill.
Up to 100 truckloads per day rumbled through Mariner’s Cove for a few months, angering many residents.
Residents at the time questioned the city and the developer as to why stockpiling permits had been approved, and believed that such permits required eventual removal of the debris.
The developer and city estimated that as much as 50,000 cubic yards of fill has been deposited on the site since 2006, including some that resulted in fines because of improper permitting.
McCorriston explained Tuesday that a stockpiling permit allows for material to be deposited in temporary piles, and that the developer intends to obtain a grading permit to spread the piles to reshape contours of the land for the cemetery.
Still, some area residents aren’t happy about the latest plan.
Kimo Franklin suggested that the property could become a cultural preservation. He urged others to petition the City Council to revisit approvals for the cemetery.
“This is the last undeveloped valley in East Hono­lulu,” he said.
Another resident, who didn’t give his name at the meeting, said he’d rather see a cemetery on the property than possibly some other commercial use allowed under the parcel’s preservation zoning, such as a golf course.
If the dredging plan goes forward, the work would take 270 days to complete. Topsoil would be added to cover the marina sediment, and designs would meet a city requirement for reducing rain runoff that has been a problem in the valley, McCorriston said.
McCorriston said cemetery construction could begin in the first or second quarter of next year. It would be the first cemetery and mortuary built on Oahu in the more than 50 years since Valley of the Temples Memorial Park and Mililani Memorial Park opened in 1960.
McCorriston said he anticipates that final design plans will be ready to share with the public in October or November. Previously, the cemetery was slated to provide 45,000 to 60,000 plots, a chapel and possibly a crematorium.
Plans for Hawaii Kai cemetery were first announced 12 years ago, but encountered difficulty and delay.
The cemetery formerly referred to as Paradise Memorial Park and East Oahu Memorial Park was initiated in 2000 by local developers Robert Gerell and Joe Leoni, who bought the land that year for $1.1 million.
Gerell and Leoni obtained Hawaii Kai Neighborhood Board support and City Council approval.
In 2003, a company affiliated with Chicago-based PRM Realty, former City Councilman John Henry Felix and local construction firm Royal Contracting acquired the property for $8 million.
Ownership changed again in 2006 through another PRM Realty affiliate, PMP II LLC, as part of an $11 million sale.
PMP II, however, ran into financial trouble and filed for bankruptcy in 2010 to block foreclosure of the cemetery site initiated by a lender in 2008.
As part of a bankruptcy reorganization two years ago, entities connected with Royal Contracting, McCorriston’s law firm, Felix, PMP and others emerged as the property owner and developer known as Hawaii Kai Memorial Park.



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