10/20/10 Parker Ranch Connector Road Update: Connector Road to Open November 2010 : Interim Easement Before Council 11/4
PARKER RANCH CONNECTOR ROAD NO LONGER A CONSTRUCTION SITE ... NOW AN "APPROVED" ROAD SOON TO OPEN TO THE PUBLIC. FINALLY.
Back in the early 1990's Richard Smart promised the Waimea a few gems -- in exchange for rezoning 340 acres of prime ag zoned land into commercial and residential zoning. One of the "big carrots" the community applauded was the promise of a connector road -- to provide an alternative route through town other than by way of the single choke point at Mamalahoa Highway and Lindsey/Kawaihae Road (actually originally promised as an arterial road). The road was to be constructed before any commercial or residential occupancy permits were issued.
Unfortunately, after his death in 1992, key provisions of Richard Smart's legacy to his community, his 2020 plan, including his promised "Connector Road" and other of his visions, were waived eliminated or reduced.
In 2006 Parker Ranch submitted plans for the Luala'i subdivision Phase III (and subsequently for the abutting Phase IV) running along the Connector Road corridor. At some point in this process, one of the County's (astute) engineers queried -- how about the Connector Road--is the construction of the road triggered by this development? Well next thing you know there was a "Big Meeting" (as described to me by a Parker Ranch representative), and golly be, the Planning Director agreed to waive the Connector Road requirement. When I got word of what was going on -- I did my best to sound threatening to the Planning Department if it had the audacity to sign (the already drafted) letter agreeing to waive the triggered condition to construct any of the Connector Road.
Next I find out that although he did not sign a Final Approval Letter (which could be appealed), the Planning Director sent an email to the engineering division instructing it to approve the Lualai'i subdivision construction drawing -- without requiring that any portion of the Connector Road be completed.
To make a long story shorter.after a lot of yelling and screaming and legal maneuvering, the Planning Department first agreed to require the short and less important Phase 3 of the Connector Road (from Luala'i Subdivision's Kamoloa Street to Mamalahoa Highway by the rodeo grounds). Not enough, I thought to myself. If the key Phase 1 of the connector road was not required now, it would likely be decades before it would be built (since no future potential triggers would likely occur until then).
So on behalf of two brave Waimea residents (January Herron Whitehead and Laverne Till), I brought a legal action against the County for failure to require that Phase 1 of the road being construction as a condition of subdivision approval. The case finally settled on September 13, 2007, with Parker Ranch agreeing to construct the key Phase 1of the Connector Road (so it would now span from the rodeo grounds to and including Pukalani Road-- at Ace Hardware, on Mamalahoa. The settlement deal was that Parker Ranch would agree to complete the road on or before May 8 , 2010, and the Plaintiffs and I would agree to not bring any more legal actions against the Road and the Subdivision approval. A copy of the Settlement Agreement is attached below.
May 8, 2010 approached and the road was not completed and the paperwork for dedication of the road appeared not even to be in process. Parker Ranch asked if I would sign off on an extension. I said yes, of course, but asked for some additional "compensation" to the community -- In exchange for Parker Ranch's non-compliance with the settlement deadline. Eventually Parker Ranch agreed to provide additional acreage to the Waimea Trails and Greenways easement at no cost to the County. This agreement (amendment to its original WTG easement) has yet to be formally signed -- but presumably Parker Ranch is not about to renig on this deal.
NOW, on October 20, 2010, the Connector Road is constructed and has been approved by the County. The interim easement paperwork is today supposed to go the County Council to be agendized for the Council meeting on November 4, 2010. The documents, including the diagram of the road location,being submitted to the County Council are attached below.
Finally..the opening of this beautiful road is in sight think the road will officially be called Ala Ohia. Thank you to Parker Ranch for complying with the terms of the Settlement. And thank you to Richard Smart.
Now it is time for you to take a walk on this road. You will be mesmerized by the beauty of Waimea.
|Parker Ranch Inc. Amendment to 9-13-07 Connector Road Settlement Agreement.doc||702.5 KB|
|trans council connector rd reso1.pdf||108.85 KB|
|Exhibit to Connector Rd Easement.pdf||678.43 KB|
|Connector Rd Easement1.pdf||52.59 KB|
^A melodious thrush and some other residents from Waimea