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Committee votes to delete Malaekahana from Koolau Loa plan

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The Council Zoning Committee voted Thursday to delete mention of any development in Malaekahana from a planned revision of the Koolau Loa Sustainable Communities Plan.

The 5-0 vote is a major setback for Hawaii Reserves’ Envision Laie Plan, which calls for 875 housing units and commercial development on ranch land in Malaekahana, between Laie and Kahuku.

The vote followed more than four hours of testimony both for and against the plan. 

Proponents, which included a number of Laie residents, said there is a dire need to develop affordable housing in an area that sees three to four families living under the same roof.

Opponents, largely members of other Koolauloa communities including Hauula and Kahuku, said fear the increased traffic and the loss of a rural lifestyle.

Council Chairman Ernie Martin indicated that he intends to hold onto the bill at the Council level pending completion of the Oahu General Plan by the Department of Planning and Permitting.

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