23 acres of north shore Maui coastline to be focus of management plan in the new year
In early 2024, the County of Maui Department of Parks and Recreation will begin working on a management plan for 23 acres of newly acquired county land on Maui’s north shore, which includes Wawau Point, often referred to as “Baby Beach.”
Community input will be an important part of developing the management plan, and the department will offer opportunities for the public to get involved when the project begins in the new year.
“The Department of Parks and Recreation is responsible for a wide array of lands, and we take a thoughtful and informed approach to stewarding the resources we are entrusted with,” said Parks and Recreation Department Director Patrick McCall in a news release announcement. “Through a community-inclusive planning process, we will identify priorities to manage and care for this coastal area that is so important to the community.”
The management plan will address operational issues, such as access, parking and public safety, as well as environmental restoration and community partnerships for stewarding resources. Townscape Inc. Environmental & Community Planning has been selected as county consultant for the management plan.
Also, the Parks Department is partnering with the University of Hawaiʻi Sea Grant Program on a dune restoration plan for the region. More information on the upcoming management plan and dune restoration plan can be found on the Parks Planning website at www.mauicounty.gov/2326/Parks-Planning.
At the end of 2022, the county accepted dedication of seven parcels, or 51.33 acres, from A&B Properties. The dedication includes 23 acres of shoreline that has long been used for public recreation, including Wawau Point and the sand dunes west of H.A. Baldwin Beach Park. This area comprises rocky, red clay headland, sand dune system, dense kiawe and ironwood forest.
County officials say the Parks Department earlier this year closed the gate at the end of Kealakai Place due to safety concerns tied to illegal camping and fires. While the gate prevents vehicular access to Wawau Point, the public can still access the area on foot.