Channel: The Kaʻū Calendar News Briefs, Hawaiʻi Island
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Ka`u Calendar News Briefs Wednesday, Sept. 7, 2016

Pahala Town Square & Hawaiian Springs Facility is proposed for the former Ka`u Sugar mill site.
Images from Hawai`i County Planning Department
A WATER BOTTLING PLANT with giant fountain and round-about, parking for buses, vans and cars and 10,000 square feet of retail space are planned makai of Maile Street in Pahala on old sugar mill land. Pahala Town Square & Hawaiian Springs Facility is up for plan approval, any day, by county Planning Director Duane Kanuha.
"Commercial facilities should be designed to fit into the locale
with minimal intrusion," according to Hawai`i County
General Plan.
      Pahala Town Square & Hawaiian Springs Facility would be located on industrial-zoned land from the old metal sugar warehouse toward the former KAHU-FM radio station – the historic building and vault, once a branch of Bank of Hilo. Retail operations would be allowed for sale of water bottled on the industrial site, as well as related items. The land also has a macadamia orchard.
      According to submissions to Hawai`i County Planning Department, PMK Capital Partners, LLC, led by Al Kam, is asking for approval of a natural water bottling facility to include accessory retail sales, warehouse buildings, offices, parking lots, landscaping and related structures designed by DRA Architecture, LLC, of Honolulu. One warehouse would be 81,250 square feet; the old warehouse is 12,000 square feet. Another processing building would be 33,000 square feet. For parking fronting Maile Street, there would be 104 stalls for passenger vehicles, five for buses and two for tour vans. A huge fountain would welcome the tour buses, vans and cars to the retail area near the bottling plant. Open space with trees and other landscaping would be preserved between the site and Pahala Plantation House, a buffer to the residential area along Maile Street.
      Water for the bottling facility would apparently come from a well that Ka`u Sugar developed for its mill. The opening of the tunnel that leads to the well via a now defunct funicular railroad is located on the PMK property. The shaft extends some 1,500 feet going under Maile Street. The well hasn’t been used since the sugar company shut down 20 years ago.
New warehouse and processing buildings dwarf the existing
warehouse on sugar mill land.
      According to Hawai`i County Department of Water Supply, the operation would be restricted from using county water for bottling and retail sales. The small scale of the county water system in Pahala, with its well above the town, also places limits on development of housing for the community.
      For plan approvals for the new facilities, the planning director is allowed closer inspection of certain types of development in certain zones to ensure conformance with the General Plan, the Zoning Code and conditions of previous approvals related to the development.
      General Plan policy 14.3.3(f) reads: “The development of commercial facilities should be designed to fit into the locale with minimal intrusion while providing the desired services. Appropriate infrastructure and design concerns shall be incorporated into the review of such developments.”
      The Planning director may issue plan approval subject to conditions or changes in the proposal which, in the director’s opinion, are necessary to carry out and further the purposes of the Zoning Code.
      The planning director considers the proposed structure, development or use in relation to the surrounding property, improvements, streets, traffic, community characteristics and natural features and may require conditions or changes to assure proper siting is provided for; proper landscaping is provided that is commensurate with the structure, development or use and its surroundings; unsightly areas are properly screened or eliminated; and within reasonable limits, any natural and man-made features of community value are preserved. The director shall require any conditions or changes in the proposal which, in the director’s opinion, are necessary to carry out these purposes.
      Comments on the plan can be sent to planning@hawaiicounty.gov, susan.gagorik@hawaiicounty.gov and larry.nakayama@hawaiicounty.gov.
      To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter.

Activity at Kilauea's lava lake last night included spattering
and upheaval of chunks of crust. Photo by Ron Johnson
VOLCANIC ACTIVITY AT KILAUEA’S summit continued to wow onlookers at Jaggar Museum Observation Deck in Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park yesterday.
      The lava lake within Halema`uma`u Overlook vent was active and at a relatively high level, with its surface easily visible. Lava spattering 40 feet or so high and chunks of the lake’s crust heaving upward mesmerized viewers last night. This morning, the lake surface was still visible at a height of 52 feet below the adjacent floor of Halema`uma`u crater.
      To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter.

KTA PUAINAKO IN HILO IS BLUE ZONES Project’s first approved grocery store in East Hawai`i. The supermarket will host a celebration from 11 a.m. to noon on Saturday, Sept. 10. The event is open to the public, and guests are welcome to enjoy free food samples and natural movement activities.
      “We’ve partnered with Blue Zones Project to make healthy choices easier for our customers,” said Puainako Store Director, Sanford Toma. “That means highlighting healthy food items throughout the store and even creating a new Blue Zones Project checkout lane that makes healthy food easier to find for you and your `ohana. Together, we can live a longer, healthier and happier life.” 
KTA Puainako is a Blue Zone Project-approved grocery store.
Photo from KTA
      The Blue Zones Project checkout lane is one of several actions that KTA Puainako completed to become Blue Zones Project approved. Rather than candy bars and sugar-laden beverages typically seen in checkout lanes, the Blue Zones Project checkout lane displays healthy grab-and-go snacks like fresh fruit, nuts and granola bars, and healthier drink options.
      The grocery store also added signage to highlight locally grown produce and foods that meet the Blue Zones Food Guidelines. They also now provide half sandwiches in the deli and label the number of serving sizes for fresh cut fruit and salads. The store also started a popular “Quick & Ono” lunch special every Wednesday with Blue Zones inspired recipes, and installed parking signs that encourage patrons to park farther from the store and walk, in order to incorporate more natural movement in their day.
      Brought to Hawaii through a sponsorship by HMSA in collaboration with Healthways, Inc. and Blue Zones, LLC, Blue Zones Project is a community-by-community well-being improvement initiative designed to enable community members to live longer, happier lives with lower rates of chronic diseases and a higher quality of life.
      To learn more, email BlueZonesProjectHawaii@healthways.com, or see bluezonesproject.com.

MEALANI’S 21ST TASTE of the Hawaiian Range Gala takes place Friday from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Hilton Waikoloa Village. 
      Participants meet the people who produce many local products from around Hawai`i Island. Kuahiwi Ranch, of Ka`u, will be on hand with their pork and beef products. Kahua Ranch, of South Kona, is providing mutton and lamb.
      A cornucopia of fresh island fruit, veggies, honey, spices and beverages will also be available.
      Tickets are available at tasteofthehawaiirange.com.
      To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter.

Hidden Valley by Patrick Ching Image from VAC
VOLCANO ART CENTER presents Patrick Ching’s Inspirations of a Hawai`i Wildlife Artist on Thursday from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. in Niaulani Campus’ Great Room in Volcano Village. Ching is a renowned Hawaiian conservationist and wildlife artist, author and ornithological illustrator who has garnered international recognition for his realistic renderings of nature. Hawai`i’s native birds, insects, plants and ferns come alive through his art.
      Call 967-8222 for more information.

HAWAI`I COUNTY FINANCE COMMITTEE conducts a workshop to discuss the county’s Dedicated and Nondedicated Agricultural Real Property Tax Programs tomorrow at 9 a.m. at Council Chambers in Hilo. Ka`u residents can participate via teleconferencing at Na`alehu State Office Building.
      Testimony from the public will be taken at the beginning. “Healthy and structured interaction between stakeholders, committee members and members of the public” will be encouraged during the workshop, according to the announcement.
      The workshop will be streamed live at hawaii.county.gov.


See kaucalendar.com.
See kaucalendar.com/TheDirectory2016.html
and kaucalendar.com/TheDirectory2016.pdf

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