parks

More than $1.5M in federal funds to go to improvements at parks on Oahu, Kauai and Maui

  • STAR-ADVERTISER / 2015
                                Beachgoers enjoyed Waimanalo Beach Park on Oahu. Hawaii is set to receive more than $1.5 million in federal funding to support improvements to city and state parks on Oahu, Kauai and Maui, according to U.S. Sen. Mazie K. Hirono.

    STAR-ADVERTISER / 2015

    Beachgoers enjoyed Waimanalo Beach Park on Oahu. Hawaii is set to receive more than $1.5 million in federal funding to support improvements to city and state parks on Oahu, Kauai and Maui, according to U.S. Sen. Mazie K. Hirono.

Hawaii is set to receive more than $1.5 million in federal funding to support improvements to city and state parks on Oahu, Kauai and Maui, according to U.S. Sen. Mazie K. Hirono.

The funding comes from the Land and Water Conservation Fund.

On Oahu, a total of $653,036 has been awarded to the City and County of Honolulu to update playgrounds and make other renovations at Geiger Community Park, Lanakila District Park, Aina Koa Neighborhood Park and Waimanalo Beach Park.

On Kauai, a total of $500,000 has been awarded to the Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources to make improvements to walkways, parking areas, and other facilities at Fort Elizabeth State Historical Park, and on Maui, another $500,000 for additional accessibility routes and restroom upgrades at Makena State Park.

“Hawaii has benefited from more than $260 million in funds from the Land and Water Conservation Fund over the last five decades,” said Hirono, a member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, in a news release. “We know how vital our outdoor spaces have been during this pandemic. Funding these projects across our state will keep these parks well maintained so they can continue to be enjoyed.”

In June, Hirono voted to pass the Great American Outdoors Act, bipartisan legislation to address the National Park Service deferred maintenance backlog, and permanently and fully fund the LWCF.

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County parks’ bathrooms MIA? Friendly dragonfly?

Today’s batch of burning questions, my smart-aleck answers and the real deal:



a flock of seagulls standing next to a body of water: Finn Hilgeman, 2, and his dad, Spencer, toss feed to a pair of geese at Lake Julian Park on Jan. 30, 2020. The pair come to feed the birds about once a week but this was their first trip in a while after January illnesses kept them at home.


© ANGELI WRIGHT/ASHEVILLE CITIZEN TIMES
Finn Hilgeman, 2, and his dad, Spencer, toss feed to a pair of geese at Lake Julian Park on Jan. 30, 2020. The pair come to feed the birds about once a week but this was their first trip in a while after January illnesses kept them at home.

Question: With Buncombe County’s parks, the bathrooms still haven’t reopened. Why is that?

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My answer: Hey, I’m sure all the little tykes “holding it” till they get home have not used any alternate “facilities.”

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Real answer: Lillian Govus, director of communications and public engagement with Buncombe County, answered this one.

“We open most restroom facilities only when those facilities are under full operation (i.e. pools, sports facilities, etc),” Govus said. “With COVID-related closures, we obviously were not at full operation.”

More: Answer Man: New Enka ballfields? County helped pay for them?

The bathroom status is seasonal under normal conditions, as well.

“Every year, we begin winterizing our bathrooms in October and close the restrooms until April,” Govus said. “Out of all of our facilities, we have currently used portable toilets at two facilities, the remainder of our facilities are operating under their status quo in terms of seasonal bathroom availability and activity levels.”

Buncombe County Parks and Recreation operates the Buncombe County Sports Park, Lake Julian Park, Charles D. Owen Park,  Hominy Valley Park, Collier Cove Nature Preserve and the following river parks: Alexander, Bent Creek, Corcoran Paige, Glen Bridge, Hominy Creek, Ledges Whitewater and Walnut Island.

More: Answer Man: Enka boat ramp tough to navigate? And more absentee ballot questions

As a “general rule of thumb,”

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Winston Lake is getting more parking spaces, a new picnic shelter and pier. Improvements continue also continue at other Winston-Salem parks. | Politics

*Creating the walking path from the new shelter alongside the lake toward the dam and aquatic center. The path will be made of crushed stone.

*The “knoll,” a small hill that has a scenic view of the lake, will get new picnic tables and stairs to replace the eroding footpath that leads up the hill now.

The Winston-Salem City Council awarded the contract for the work over the summer, along with contracts for other park projects that are being paid for from the 2018 bonds:

*A brand-new “pocket park” will be built on Bethania-Rural Hill Road beside Fire Station 20. The park will be called Bethania Freedmen’s Park, in recognition of the Bethania Freedmen’s community that developed in the area after the Civil War.

The park will have fitness equipment, a restroom and plantings. The work includes site preparation and grading. Since the park is beside Station 20, the work will also include a new driveway to the station, making for better entry to the station.

Garanco Inc. of Pilot Mountain is doing the work for $723,900.

*Playground improvements at Reynolds, Skyland and Lockland parks will be done at a cost of $534,000 by the W.C. Construction Co. of Winston-Salem. Reynolds and Skyland parks will get new equipment and be fully accessible with the addition of rubber surfaces on an asphalt base, while Lockland will get new equipment but remain with a mulched surface. 

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