The County of Maui will lock the Amala Place gate entrance to Kanaha Beach Park at closing on Sunday, Sept. 19, through 7 a.m. on Friday, Sept. 24, 2021. The temporary closure is needed to safeguard public safety during the area’s planned clean-up that will require heavy equipment to remove derelict vehicles and solid waste from the area.
The Maui Police Department will close Amala Place to through traffic near the Kanaha Pond Wildlife Sanctuary and the Wailuku-Kahului Wastewater Treatment Facility. Kanaha Beach Park will remain open and accessible via Koeheke Street, which becomes Ka’a Street, near the old rental car area by the airport.
Earlier this month, no trespassing signs were installed both mauka and makai of Amala Place to prepare for the Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resource’s long-planned restoration of the 70-year old sanctuary. The County of Maui must also clear the area fronting the wastewater treatment facility for environmental protection.
The County of Maui has been working with social workers and service providers to assist those living in the area’s homeless encampment. To date, 25 individuals have moved into shelters and one has moved into permanent housing. Thirteen have moved out of the area and 12 are currently considering offers for shelter and services. Maui Police Department officers have served the remaining 14 individuals with notices to vacate.
“I want to thank the social services agencies and their caring staff members who have been working closely with area residents to help them get into suitable shelter before rainy season begins. Shelter is available for those who need additional time to make relocation plans,” explained Mayor Michael Victorino. “We’ve made all the necessary provisions to offer them a safe place with proper sanitation facilities. It’s their choice to accept these services or not, but remaining in the existing encampment is not an option because it is unsafe and it has become a public health hazard.”
During the week of September 20-24, the Hawaii DLNR’s Division of Forestry and Wildlife will join Maui County’s Department of Environmental Management, Department of Public Works and Maui Police Department officers to restore the area.