Beaches to close for maintenance


By CHELSEA JENSEN

Stephens Media

An array of large-scale maintenance activities slated for four Hawaii County parks around the island will prompt monthly closures.

That’s according to the county Department of Parks and Recreation, which recently released its annual general maintenance schedule for work at Kahaluu Beach Park in North Kona, Spencer Park at Ohaiula Beach in South Kohala, and Ahalanui Park and Isaac Hale Beach Park, both in Puna. While maintenance work is under way, the parks will be closed to the public.

The periodic, short-term closures are necessary to get the work done without putting the public at unnecessary risk, according to the department.

Stephens Media was unable to reach Parks Director Clayton Honma or Deputy Director Bob Fitzgerald, who were in county budget meetings, as of press time on Friday.

However, the department said the maintenance projects were centered around improving accessibility and safety at four of the county’s most-used parks. The work will include tree trimming, raking the beach at Spencer Park, pressure washing sidewalks and restrooms, cleaning barbecue pits, painting and assessing parking lots for pothole repair and whether lines need to be re-painted.

Crews are slated to perform work from 6 to 11 a.m. at Kahaluu Beach Park on Feb. 5, March 5, April 2, May 7, June 4, July 2, Aug. 6, Sept. 10, Oct. 1, Nov. 5 and Dec. 3, according to the county. The work days are scheduled to fall on the first Tuesday of the month with the exception of September when work will be conducted on the second Tuesday because of the Labor Day holiday.

Work at South Kohala’s Spencer Park will require two-day, and in some cases three-day, closures, according to the department. The park, located south of Kawaihae, will be closed Jan. 16-17, Feb. 13-14, March 6-7, April 9-10, May 14-16, Sept. 10-12, Oct. 9-10, Nov. 13-14, and Dec. 11-12. No work is scheduled during the summer months.

At Ahalanui Park, which is home to a volcanically heated, spring-fed pool, county crews will be working from 6 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the second Wednesday of each month. Tentative work days are set for Feb. 13, March 13, April 10, May 8, June 12, July 10, Aug. 14, Sept. 11, Oct. 9, Nov. 13 and Dec. 11, according to the county.

Pahoa’s Isaac Hale Beach Park will see full-day closures on Tuesdays that remain in effect until 1 p.m. on Wednesday — meaning no camping will be allowed during the evening hours after crews have completed work. Work there is slated for Jan. 22, Feb. 26, March 26, April 23, May 28, June 25, July 23, Aug. 27, Sept. 24, Oct. 22, Nov. 26, and Dec. 17.

The Hawaii County Department of Parks and Recreation is responsible for maintaining and operating approximately 200 parks facilities islandwide, of which some offer camping that is used 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Email Chelsea Jensen at cjensen@westhawaiitoday.com.

 

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