LUC to Accept Testimony on Final EIS for Olowalu Town Project

November 17, 2015, 3:02 PM HST · Updated November 18, 6:16 AM
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Olowalu, Nov. 2015. Photo by Wendy Osher.

Olowalu, Nov. 2015. Photo by Wendy Osher.

The state Land Use Commission on Wednesday, will consider acceptance of the Olowalu Town LLC and Olowalu Ekolu LLC’s Final Environmental Impact Statement.

The public meeting is scheduled to start at 9:30 a.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 18, 2015, at the Maui Arts and Cultural Center’s Haynes Meeting Room.  While testimony will be accepted on Wednesday, there is no testimony on the agenda for a separate LUC meeting scheduled for 8:30 a.m. on Thursday, Nov. 19, 2015.

Olowalu General Store, Nov. 2015. Photo by Wendy Osher.

Olowalu General Store, Nov. 2015. Photo by Wendy Osher.

The FEIS for the Olowalu Town Master Plan seeks the reclassification of approximately 320 acres of land situated at Olowalu from the Agricultural District to the Rural and Urban Districts.

According to the Final EIS document, the Master Plan area consists of 23 agricultural parcels encompassing approximately 636 acres.  The plan also features approximately 1,500 dwelling units.

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The Final EIS says the project will help to address housing needs in West Maui, with a development that discourages outward urban sprawl.  The Planning Department’s Long Range Division has estimated the housing need in West Maui to be “approximately 3,500 additional units by 2030, beyond those lands already entitled.”

Olowalu undeveloped lands, Nov. 2015. Photo by Wendy Osher.

Olowalu undeveloped lands, Nov. 2015. Photo by Wendy Osher.

Community groups who plan to testify against the project include the Surfrider Foundation Maui Chapter and the Maui Tomorrow Foundation.

Those opposed to the project claim the development would limit public access to the coastline, impact ocean users, pose threats to nearshore marine environments, and threaten traditional and customary use of the coast.

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