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Opponents of development of Waimanalo forest gather to stop construction

  • Star-Advertiser video by Craig T. Kojima

  • MARK LADAO / MLADAO@STARADVERTISER.COM
                                Protesters outside Sherwood Forest in Waimanalo today.

    MARK LADAO / MLADAO@STARADVERTISER.COM

    Protesters outside Sherwood Forest in Waimanalo today.

  • MARK LADAO / MLADAO@STARADVERTISER.COM
                                Protesters outside Sherwood Forest in Waimanalo today.

    MARK LADAO / MLADAO@STARADVERTISER.COM

    Protesters outside Sherwood Forest in Waimanalo today.

Opponents of the city’s plans to build a multipurpose field, parking lot and playground at Sherwood Forest in Waimanalo rallied today at the forest’s entrance, citing the city’s order to contractors over the weekend to have construction continue immediately.

Tracy Newman, a member of the Save Sherwood Forest group looking to stop construction, said, “This is not just about stopping this project… It’s a catalyst for development in Waimanalo.”

Opposition against the new facilities included its potential to attract more tourism and the disruption of the dynamic of the Waimanalo area as well as that nearby existing parks are not being cared for properly.

Opponents said there was a stakeholder meeting last Wednesday they weren’t allowed to attend when contractors were given orders to continue construction immediately.

Newman said she didn’t think construction would start today.

Aside from community concerns, there is a clear cultural one as well, which has grown as the forest’s designation as a funerary on the National Register of Historic Places and its listing on the Hawaii Historic Register has become more public.

There are protestors on either side of Kalanianaole Highway, some of whom have been there since 5 a.m.

Some are waving Hawaii State flags and wearing shirts supporting the efforts on Hawaii island’s Mauna Kea to stop construction of the Thirty Meter Telescope on the summit.

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