Edit ModuleShow Tags

Unsolicited Advice: Replacing Macy's

We had been preparing unsolicited advice that the downtown Macy’s was overdue for a thorough remodeling. Before we could get that out, Macy’s announced in January it was closing the store. The doors lock some time this month.



Published:


Photo: Erik Ries

 

WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?

We’ve emailed the building’s owners, Lexington Realty Trust, which acquired it for nearly $35 million in 2006. They’ve haven’t replied, as of press time. The consensus around town is that the site seems destined for some mix of residential and retail.

 

WHAT SHOULD HAPPEN NEXT?

Apartments, absolutely, especially market value and not just luxury pads. The Chinatown/downtown gentrification we all seem to want needs more neighbors in the neighborhood.

Ground-floor retail, dining and services would add a lot, too. The current building also includes public parking, a handy thing to retain.

But whatever activities go into this lot, the most beneficial step of all would be to tear down the building and construct something beautiful. The current structure was put up in 1979 as a sexy, modern home for Liberty House, but its severe look was unfriendly from the start and seems especially dated now—a Fortress of Retail, windowless and forbidding.

So, Lexington Realty Trust, you have a rare chance here to add something meaningful to the look, feel and function of downtown Honolulu at one of its most high-profile intersections. Please don’t blow it.

By the way, this isn’t the magazine’s first plea for beautification at this site. The June 1906 issue of Paradise of the Pacific, our predecessor, described the side of Bethel Street between King and Hotel streets (half of which is now occupied by the Macy’s building) as “an unsightly spectacle of corrugated iron shacks and fences—wholly antagonistic to the ‘city beautifying’ movement—that the labor of a few men can remove in a week.”

See? Chances like this come around about once a century.

Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module

Subscribe to Honolulu

Honolulu Magazine January 2018
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Trending

 

Here’s How Hawai‘i Responded on Social Media to the False Ballistic Missile Alert

Ward Warehouse

A false alarm caused by human error sent the entire state of Hawai‘i into panic mode.

 

Twitter is Going Nuts Over Barack Obama’s Backward Hat and Rubbah Slippahs

Obama

Vacation mode: Activate.

 

6 Things You Need to Know About Rat Lungworm Disease Before You Eat a Salad

Rat lungworm disease

Everyone’s talking about the recent disease outbreak affecting the Islands. Find out what it is, where it comes from and how you can prevent it.

 

Here’s How to Survive a Possible North Korea Nuclear Strike in Hawai‘i

North Korea

What you need to do according to the Hawai‘i State Department of Defense.

 


20 Great O‘ahu Hikes

Explore 20 great adventures that offer beautiful vistas, waterfalls and more.

 

 

Edit ModuleShow Tags