Maui Tomorrow was in attendance at yesterday’s LUC hearing on the proposed Olowalu Town. It was the latest of three long hearing days spent on this matter, and we appreciate the time put in by concerned citizens, who waited through 10 hours of testimony yesterday before they got a one-minute chance to testify. We also appreciate the efforts of the LUC commissioners, who had to read through four volumes of the draft Final EIS, as well as 300 pages of testimony submitted before yesterday’s hearing. Unfortunately, the draft Final EIS was not forthcoming with information, and instead attempted to minimize the adverse impacts that are likely to occur if the proposal goes forward.
Maui Tomorrow has been following the Olowalu Town project since 2005. It would consist of 1,500 homes and up to 900 ‘ohana dwellings, would worsen the already heavy traffic to and from West Maui, and would impact coastal water quality, beach access, Native Hawaiian cultural practices, and archaeological sites. Endangered nene geese nest in the area, and the reef offshore, estimated to be 500 years old, is home to several species of rare corals. Maui Tomorrow has worked for years to educate people about the importance of Olowalu, mauka to makai, and has joined forces with concerned citizens from all over Maui to keep Olowalu from being turned into just another beachside, mega-development on an already congested highway that is a lifeline for West Maui.