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Field Notes: Gripes and Grievances at the Waikiki Neighborhood Board

Field Notes takes inside looks at the scenes and subcultures of Honolulu. This month: the Waikiki Neighborhood Board.


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photos: elyse butler and matt mallams

Reports and Presentations

>> A food and beverage consultant for the Honolulu Zoo reports on the zoo’s plans to serve “adult beverages” (alcohol) in one of the zoo’s “secured locations” (shave ice stand). As the location will be secured, he says, “No need to worry about drunken monkeys.”

>> A representative from the governor’s office says that tsunami debris was  brought to Kewalo Basin, but it was not radioactive. In fact, none of the ocean’s tsunami debris is radioactive. “No cause for concern,” she says.  “Any questions?”

>> A representative from the mayor’s office, reading a response to a complaint about a missing sidewalk, says: “The Department of Design and Construction ‘Did not pave missing sidewalk when we paved Paoakalani [Avenue] because this was out of their scope.’ And I’m not sure what that means. If you’d like me to find that out—again, I’m just reading the report.”

>> The state’s newly appointed homeless coordinator says the “big idea” the neighborhood board should remember is that neither government, the private sector nor the faith-based community alone can solve homelessness. Rather, he says, “It’s going to be solved by all of us.” A board member replies that the board wants a law-enforcement solution. “I don’t think we’re going to give you the type of big idea you’re looking for,” he says.

>> A planning consultant, representing an Ala Wai Boulevard property owner who intends to tear down an old house to build a new house, explains the project. After examining the consultant’s poster presentation, a board member says, “If you look at the current dwelling compared to the proposed dwelling, this thing is a no brainer—no offense to the current dwelling.


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