News Archives:
November 2002 and before


November 21, 2002
Waimea Falls Park lease may be extended four months
by Treena Shapiro  Advertiser  Staff Writer

 The City Council Budget Committee granted a four-month lease extension to the company managing 1,875-acre Waimea Falls Park after more than 20 community members argued against a proposed one-year extension.

November 8, 2002 
 Audubon is aiming to preserve Waimea
By Diana Leone

     ....Should the City and County of Honolulu chose Audubon to operate Waimea, "our primary objectives are protection and enhancement of cultural, botanical and ecological resources. All are equally important," King said in a preview of a public presentation she will give at 7 p.m. Thursday at the Haleiwa Ali'i Beach Park Surf Center....more

October 3, 2002 
Council considers no-bid lease measures
By Treena Shapiro Advertiser Staff Writer

The City Council is considering two bills that would allow the city administration
to award long-term leases without an open bidding process in cases where it would be more advantageous to go with the most qualified candidate rather than the highest bidder.   (Bill 50 & 79)

September 8, 2002 
Group 'gravely concerned' about Waimea Valley plants
By Eloise Aguiar, Honolulu Advertiser Staff Writer

A national plant conservation organization has urged the city to select a management group such as the Audubon Society to take charge of Waimea Valley Adventure Park.

Conservation Group Urges Expert Care for Waimea Falls
by Diana Leone  Honolulu Star Bulletin

August 22, 2002 
Waimea park dispute ends
By Andrew Gomes, Honolulu Advertiser

The New York owner of Waimea Valley Adventure Park and Sea Life Park has reached a settlement with Bank of Hawai'i over a loan dispute in a major step toward completing the city's purchase of the Waimea property and resolving the park owner's bankruptcy.

June 18, 2002
Rare blossom in bloom
By Treena Shapiro  Honolulu Star Bulletin

1 Kokia is blooming today only, but another species can be seen for 2 weeks at Waimea Arboretum

June 15, 2002
Kokia plants in bloom
Kirk Fernandes, KHON Channel 2 News

The Waimea Botanical Garden is the only place on thee planet where tis month, you can see three rare types of flowers blooming at the same time. 

June 14, 2002
 Waimea Park: city wants solution by year's end
Pacific Business News
The city wants to hire a company to manage Waimea Falls Park by the end of the year. "That is our goal," said Malcolm Tom, city deputy managing director. Wednesday was the request for proposal deadline. 

June 11, 2002
City hires curator for plants at Waimea Falls Park
By Gordon Y.K. Pang

The city has issued a contract for a curator at Waimea Falls Park, easing tensions between the city and conservationists worried about endangered plants at the site.

Waimea Arboretum gets its director back
By Lynda Arakawa
Honolulu Advertiser Capitol Bureau 

The city has hired Waimea Arboretum and Botanical Garden director David Orr to care for the botanical collection in Waimea Falls Park, a move arboretum advocates are calling a significant first step in achieving the community vision of the park.

June 7, 2002 
Put Waimea in land trust, group urges
By Diana Leone Honolulu Star Bulletin

  A nonprofit land trust is urging the city to place Waimea Falls Park in a land trust instead of handing the culturally significant North Shore park to a commercial operator.

June 3, 2002 
Waimea park contract deadline nears
Pacific Business News

Business interested in operating Waimea Falls Park have until Wednesday of this week to submit an application to do it. The City and County of Honolulu twice extended the deadline for bids to run the 1,875-acre park in a scenic valley on Oahu's North Shore. 

May 27, 2002
State considers park land donation
Honolulu Star Bulletin

Kamehameha chorus to sing at film opening
Honolulu Star Bulletin

May 22, 2002
Audubon bids for Waimea Falls
The group proposes to operate a botanical and cultural center
Honolulu Star Bulletin

May 10, 2002
Budget Woes Put Rare Waimea Plants In Peril
Waimea Valley is home to thousands of plant species. The Waimea arboretum foundation tries to keep the rare and endangered ones alive. But with little money, the foundation has been forced to lay-off four people this month. 

Job funding dispute brews at Waimea Falls
 A preservation group wants the park to pay for research positions
Star Bulletin

Waimea Arboretum furloughs rest of staff
Honolulu Advertiser

Thursday, May 9, 2002
Rare Collections In Great Peril: Public Asked To Send Emergency Donations

March 28, 2002
Questions raised about city's Waimea plans

March 21, 2002
Waimea Falls Park still hard to make profitable

When Honolulu took possession of Waimea Falls Park in late February for a
bargain basement $5.1 million, it got more than one of the world's most exotic,  sacred locations, filled with awe-inspiring ancient, natural and cultural
 wonders. It got a paradox.

March 14, 2002

"Some council members worry that the situation in Waipio could be repeated at other expensive city park sites around the island. The city is spending at least $5.2 million to buy Waimea Falls Park and wants to find a private operator to bring in revenue to thefailing visitor attraction" (click here for complete story). 

March 13, 2002
The Wonders of Waimea Falls
Exploring the City's Newest Park

March 6, 2002
for Management and operation of the Waimea Falls Park
(PDF, 240 kb)

March 1, 2002

City Takes Charge of Waimea Falls Park

KITV 4 NEWS clip 3/1/02 KITV 4 NEWS 3/1/02
KGMB 9 NEWS interviws David Orr 3/01/02

Wednesday, February 27, 2002 

Effort To Save Historic Ahupua'a 
"A Model For Community Based Tourism Development"

City takes over valley
The city took possession of scenic Waimea Valley yesterday, a major step toward preserving the 1,875-acre valley on O'ahu's North Shore.

Friday, January 18, 2002

Court: Condemnation talks OK on Waimea
Debbie Sokei   Pacific Business News 

 The City and County of Honolulu has been given a green light to continue
steps to acquire Waimea Falls Park through condemnation, a move observers say comes just in time to stave off extinction of some rare and endangered plants at the botanical reserve. 

Sunday,  January 13, 2002 
Waimea Falls Park gets back to its roots

A renewed emphasis on nature and culture makes the park on
Oahu's North Shore a treasure to behold

Friday, December 21, 2001
(from October 2001 "Plant Talk" Magazine)

The Waimea Arboretum and Botanical Garden, which sits in a deep valley on the north shore of Oahu Island, Hawaii, is one of the world's greatest collections of tropical plants, particularly threatened island species. The future of this unique collection, and of the sacred Hawaiian sites within the valley, is threatened by the sale of the property.  (more)

Friday, November 30, 2001

Ruling Forces Attractions Hawai'i To Fund Additional Horticultural Staff

HONOLULU - The Thursday, November 29th ruling by Presiding Judge, the Honorable Conrad B. Duberstein of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Eastern District of New York will force New York developer, Christian Wolfer and his local operating company, Attractions Hawai'i (AH) to "immediately" fund the rehiring of three of the six gardeners abruptly terminated in mid-September - plus a certified horticulturist. The layoff had brought the already-threatened internationally recognized garden yet another step closer to disaster.

November 15, 2001 

Hale'iwa business wipeout worst in town's memory

The mood at Sunset Hawai'i Clothing Company in Hale'iwa last week was even gloomier than the overcast weather outside.

"It's hard," said owner Gloria Gerber, fighting back tears as she delicately packed up T-shirts, women's wear and gift inventory and prepared to lock the doors for the last time. "We've been here for 11 years. I could hang on, but what's the point? ... I have no more employees. I'm working without pay. This place doesn't make the rent."

August 22, 2001 

 Christian Wolffer Trips at Waimea
In the Hamptons, Christian Wolffer may be known as the German-born Lebenskünstler who owns Sagpond Vineyards, producer of a â97 merlot that The New York Times pronounced "bottled pornography." But a continent away, on the Hawaiian island of Oahu, the venture capitalist has become the Pacific equivalent of Ira Rennert, the mansion-building desecrator of Sagaponack. 

August 14, 2001 
Park's bankruptcy stalls city's purchase
The planned buyout of Waimea Falls Park is on hold until the owner and bank settle

August 7, 2001 
Waimea Falls Park owner calls OHA's offer too low
The owner of Waimea Falls Park has rejected the Office of Hawaiian Affairs' $5.2 million offer for the North Shore property, calling it "extremely low" and saying the park's infrastructure alone is valued at $11 million.

July 28, 2001 
Waimea Falls Park facing permits fight
Little by little over the past decade, operators of Waimea Falls Park have made changes to the sluggish North Shore tourist stop without getting the necessary permits. 

July 11, 2001
Stewards of Waimea Past & Present View of Valley
The Waimea Valley has been consistently in the news for the past year, principally because its extraordinary botanic collection receives so little care that many of the most sensitive plants are stressed and some are dying.

July 2, 2001
City urged to move forward on Waimea Valley 
The North Shore Neighborhood Board has urged the mayor to proceed with condemnation of the Waimea Valley Adventure Park property despite a move in the City Council to defer action until the Office of Hawaiian Affairs has had an opportunity to purchase the park.

June 21, 2001
City Council advances Waimea Valley deal
The Honolulu City Council yesterday approved the first legal step toward the city acquiring scenic Waimea Valley through condemnation but minutes later formally urged Mayor Jeremy Harris to defer that action until the Office of Hawaiian Affairs has an opportunity to buy the property.

June 20, 2001
Council Sends Mixed Messages On Waimea Falls
Join the discussion on "Who should own Waimea Falls Park?"
The Honolulu CityCouncil passed conflicting resolutions Wednesday about the possible purchase of Waimea Falls Park.

June 19, 2001
Some aina more precious than others

June 19, 2001
City Council approves condemnation of Waimea Valley

June 19, 2001
Honolulu City Council approves condemnation &
 votes to wait for OHA purchase of Waimea Valley
(RealVideo)  (high bandwidth)

June 19, 2001
June 20 City Council meeting on 
Reso 01-151(condemnation) & 01-160(OHA purchase) or both

June 19, 2001
City to take first step in Waimea Valley acquisition 
The Honolulu City Council tomorrow is expected to approve the first legal step toward the city acquiring scenic Waimea Valley through condemnation.

June 15, 2001 
OHA's Waimea proposal may be worth the risk
The issue: OHA's proposed acquisition of Waimea Valley has tempting cultural and financial possibilities.

June 15, 2001
Editorial: OHA, city must partner at Waimea
While there are plenty of good reasons for the Office of Hawaiian Affairs to get involved in the ownership and/or management of Waimea Falls Park, there is no purpose in falling into a bidding war with the city over the site.

June 14, 2001
OHA's John Waihe'e meets with Mayor
(RealVideo) (high bandwidth)

June 14, 2001
OHA bids for Waimea park
The Office of Hawaiian Affairs mounted a head-to-head challenge against the city yesterday to buy the sacred ground of Waimea Falls Park. 

June 7, 2001
OHA votes to hire Real Estate firm to assess WFP value
(RealVideo) (high bandwidth)

June 7, 2001 
Waimea Condemnation Advances (City Council Action)
It gives OHA until June 20 to persuade it not to condemn the valley.

June 7, 2001 
Gathering Places
OHA Should Purchase Waimea Valley 
By John Waihee IV
One who wishes to succeed should be alert to every opportunity, like one who catches birds by imitating their cries. The Office of Hawaiian Affairs, caught in a tug of war between aspects of being a perpetual trust and a quasi-government agency, has developed some unproductive qualities. 

Legislature to protest OHA considering purchase of 
Waimea Falls Park proposal

June 4, 2001 
Audubon interest adds new life to Waimea
Now this is getting interesting. Add to the list of those interested in buying, or at least getting involved in, the Waimea Falls Park the prestigious Audubon Society. This adds weight to the hope that the park, and its world-class collection of endangered and exotic plants, may have a future.

Council proceeds with plan to buy Waimea Valley

May 30, 2001
OHA board considers $6 million Waimea Falls purchase
The Office of Hawaiian Affairs board is now considering the purchase of Waimea Falls Park after two OHA committees favored the idea.

May 30, 2001
OHA Looking at Waimea Falls
The Office of Hawaiian Affairs could be a step closer to buying the Waimea Falls Park. Two committees voted to look into buying the park, and set aside $6-million for the acquisition.

OHA considers purchasing Waimea Valley

May 22, 2001 
Crisis at Waimea Falls
The future of Waimea Falls Park on Oahu's North Shore has become a more emotional matter after its botanical gardens director was ordered off the property and escorted to his car by police officers. 

OHA visits Waimea Falls Park

Arboretum Director removed by police

Botanist ousted at Waimea Falls Park
The director of Waimea Falls Park's world-class botanical garden was removed from his job and escorted from the property by two police officers yesterday after the park's general manager said he was no longer welcome at the financially troubled North Shore tourist attraction.

May 17, 2001
OHA, city should cooperate at Waimea 
The preliminary interest of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs in buying Waimea Falls Park on O'ahu's North Shore presents an intriguing possibility.

April 21, 2001 
"Owner of Waimea Valley & Sea Life Park file for bankruptcy"
The owner of Waimea Valley Adventure Park and Sea Life Park filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy yesterday in an effort to block the foreclosure and sale of the key Hawai'i attractions.

March 5, 2001
"Scenic and historic, Waimea Valley is at crossroad"
 It would be difficult to find a place that meets more expectations of what HawaiÎi should be than Waimea Valley.

 Oct. 18, 2000

October 11, 2000 
Many residents favor keeping Waimea natural
They want the city to buy the land but not build a theme park
By Harold Morse Star-Bulletin

September 27, 2000
The Winds of Waimea
   One of Hawai'i's true treasures is waiting for us to act.
 Bob Stauffer

permanent link: PDF file