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Council approves Kohala Kai public access

March 7, 2014 - 7:25pm

Kohala Kai developers were finally successful Friday relieving County Council members’ trepidation over approving a public easement through the luxury subdivision after assuring them the historical Ala Loa trail would be protected.

The council voted 7-1, with South Kona/Ka‘u Councilwoman Brenda Ford voting no and Hilo Councilman Dennis Onishi absent, to approve the plan.

Resolution 140, which the committee has been struggling with since July, accepts a public easement as a condition of development. The easement would allow for a public trail from Akoni Pule Highway to the shoreline and a lateral trail along the ocean, but does not take into account the Ala Loa trail, believed to follow a jeep road that runs through the property.

A last-minute good-faith agreement between developers and the National Park Service and a verbal agreement with the council will help reserve public access, according to Steven Lim, representing the developer.

Get the full story in the Saturday, March 8, edition of West Hawaii Today.