Testimony on South Maui Growth

Sierra Club Maui Group May 29, 2012
PO Box 791180
Paia, HI 96779

To: General Plan Committee
Re: May 29, 2012 GP meeting General Plan Review item GP-2(2)

Greetings to General Plan Committee Members and Chair Baisa:

Sierra Club Maui has offered comments on the MIP throughout the review process.
Like others we are concerned to see proposed growth areas that have been previously reviewed and found unneeded being brought up again at the eleventh hour. The public respects your hard work. We would ask you to respect the public review process.

Sierra Club Maui would like to go on record in support of the Kihei Community Association recommendations. KCA has devoted four separate meetings to the MIP process over the last four years, and we hope that their remarks will be given considerable weight in your decision making.

1.We join with many who request that your discussions for population growth centers like Kihei-Makena include actual proposed unit counts for the growth boundaries.

2.State planning laws specify that General Plans should manage growth and discuss desirable population levels. Please do not accept carte blanche the current Director’s proposed Growth Areas totaling 3,750 possible NEW south Maui units plus Makena Resort Expansion, PLUS 4000 additional units already approved and not built in the region. ONE main growth area around Maui High Tech Park would create a compact urban core recommended by smart growth advocates. Please support this.

3.Maui County Planning Dept studies projected a need for 1,482 NEW units, not 3,750
Does anyone on this Council believe roads, water, sewage treatment and other infrastructure would be available for this level of growth in South Maui over the next
17 years! Please do not overburden the resources our existing residents depend upon. This is NOT a 50 year plan.

4.PLEASE DELETE the proposed Makena Resort “Residential growth area” (D035 on Map S-2). It’s completely unneeded and has been reviewed by GPAC, Maui PC and previous Planning Department Staff, and left out of the UGB. It should not be reinserted now.

5.Parcel “D035” is a rugged area with cultural and biological resources that should be planned very carefully. Makena Resort already has 260 acres of undeveloped A-2 multifamily designated land as well as business and commercial areas to use that could yield almost 2000 future units.

6.Sierra Club Maui has asked consistently that the urban designated Makena Resort lands mauka of Makena State (Map S-3) park be given an historic “overlay” to acknowledge and protect the high concentration of cultural sites present there in both developed and undeveloped lands. These cultural resources include:
a) a Heiau complex
b) a large precontact settlement with over 200 features
c)the largest intact segment of Kamehameha III’s “Aupuni Wall”
d)numerous other habitation and agricultural field system features
e)the largest number of known burials in Makena Resort lands, with likelihood of more
PLEASE consider directing staff to pursue this option.

7.Sierra Club Maui supports the proposed “protected lands” in Makena-Keoneoio-Kanaio and Kealia Pond.

8.We support the request for all major south Maui Gulches to be shown as “sensitive lands” on the Kihei-Makena Maps

9.We support a “sensitive lands” designation for the rugged lava flows, gulches and extensive native plant habitat in the southern end of Wailea 670 (Map S-2) and adding the 22 acre protected Palauea cultural preserve to the same map.

10. We support greenbelts between existing neighborhoods and proposed large growth areas such as Maui Meadows (existing) and Wailea 670 (proposed) being shown on Kihei-Makena Directed Growth maps as is being done on Central Maui maps.

11. We support a passive park designation for a mauka portion of the County land on Map S-2 where the new police station is being built. Kihei needs urban wilderness area and the rugged lava landscape of the eastern part of this parcel protects native wiliwili trees and other rare native plants as well as helps provide natural stormwater retention.

Mahalo nui for your consideration of these comments