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IMAGINE process exploring ways to improve Lahaina Harborfront area

By Staff | Mar 28, 2013

LAHAINA – The IMAGINE public planning process for the Lahaina Harborfront area continues with a meeting scheduled for Thursday, March 28, at 5:30 p.m. at the Pioneer Inn.

Light refreshments will be served. The public is invited to attend.

This will be the final meeting in the transportation analysis portion of the plan. The following meetings will focus on how best to tell the important historical and cultural stories of the area through interpretive signs, restoration of historic sites and more.

The Lahaina Harborfront is defined as the area bounded by Market, Canal and Front streets, and the ocean.

There are two large parks in this area: the Banyan Tree and the oceanfront park makai of Lahaina Public Library. In addition, there is a park-like area fronting the harbor.

According to Lahaina Restoration Foundation, the community has identified many challenges in the area, including conflicting uses, loitering and drug use, traffic congestion, lack of respect, lack of shady seating areas and disrespect for historic sites.

The public planning process has identified a pedestrian-first approach for this highly congested area.

The draft plan calls for replacing the automobile parking around three sides of Banyan Tree Park (Hotel, Wharf and Canal streets) with a sidewalk.

A dispatch system would be created to manage the numerous taxis that come into the area.

Congestion during boat days and the daily arrival and departures of ferries would be alleviated with a harbor ambassador, who would be stationed by the hau tree at the harbor loading dock.

The IMAGINE public planning process is funded by a grant from the County of Maui Planning Department and is coordinated by Lahaina Restoration Foundation.

For more information, contact Lahaina Restoration Foundation at 661-3262.