Help preserve beach access
This week’s cover story on Kaanapali Beach is the latest development in residents’ efforts to keep beach access open for everyone.
This is an issue Randy Draper has been pursuing for many years, both at the county and state levels.
Draper began with monitoring around-the-clock beach parking and access in Kaanapali Resort, then noticed hotels were extending out into the state beach with plantings and furniture for guests.
When we discussed a more recent legal battle, Draper said he’s concerned about commercial boat traffic along Kaanapali Beach, the potential for ocean pollution and – similar to Rep. Angus McKelvey’s view – the lack of state oversight of this ocean recreation management area.
If beach access and related issues are important to you, check out a Facebook group called “Access Denied! Surf? Fish? Dive?”
Founder Kai Nishiki launched the page with: “What’s going on? For decades, developers have been crowding West Maui’s shoreline with hotels, condos, and commercial operations. Longtime beachgoers are told they cannot access the shoreline or else are trespassing. Parking is taken up by tourist-industry customers and employees. We need to reclaim our shoreline access points now or risk losing them forever.”
“Who’s behind this effort? Na Papa’i o Wawae ‘Ula’ula is an unincorporated community association of West Maui residents and other beach users who are concerned about protecting and preserving the quality of life and environment for West Maui communities particularly as its relates to the public’s use and access of the shoreline.”
Currently, the group’s efforts are focused on the stretch from Kaanapali Beach to Napili Point, where many private owners are blocking or obstructing public shoreline access.
If you share these concerns, get involved and help preserve beach access for everyone.