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West Needs Infrastructure Before Homes


LoPresti’s Letters …Rep. Matthew LoPresti


As we enter the second half of the 2015 regular session of the state Legislature, I wanted to share my sentiments and concerns on residential developments occurring in West Oahu that must be addressed.

On a daily basis, many of us sit in traffic for hours on end, crawling from bumper to bumper just to get to and from our work-places, schools and appointments.

Our quality of life is much different from those who don’t have this commute — we have to plan our daily lives well ahead of time and, as a result, we become distracted from spending quality time with our families, focusing on our careers and our communities, and overall is a big source of stress.

However, we live in Ewa because we love Ewa. We love our homes, our communities, our schools and the unique spirit of who we are as Ewa Beachers.

We support these additional residential developments because we will be able to share our community and the opportunities it presents to others, and because it is the right thing to do to allow our children to live comfortable and successful lives here in our beautiful island home.

That is why I support Ho‘opili development in the Ewa Plains, so that it will provide more Hawaii families with these opportunities.

With bringing in more homes and residents into the area, however, comes a more crucial responsibility and kuleana to the residents of West Oahu to begin traffic mitigation and improvement projects in the area prior to the selling of the first 1,000 units.

That is why I have written to Honolulu Council chairman Ernie Martin and vice chairman Ikaika Anderson, to require D.R. Horton & Schuler Homes, developers of Ho‘opili, to undertake major transportation needs of the region, such as widening Farrington Highway, improving the H1 interchange at Kunia and improving the East-West connector.

These projects, and others like them aim to ease the flow of traffic for those commuting and improve their quality of life.

Good planning policy involves a balance between growth and infrastructure, and should encompass actions to ensure that there are improvements that will allow growth, and ease the current transportation and infrastructure concerns.

As we continue to build homes in the Ewa Plain and elsewhere in West Oahu, we are obligated to pay heed to the anticipated needs of not just current residents, but also for future residents — our children and their children.

We must prepare for the future by working with developers and planning officials to ensure that we are not adding to the monstrous gridlock we brave every day, and to improve quality of life for our residents, both current and future.

I look forward to continuing this dialogue with our community members, city and state officials, and the leadership of D.R. Horton to find common ground on behalf of our residents to ease the traffic situation that affects our daily lives.

Matthew LoPresti represents District 41 (Ewa Villages, Ewa Beach, Ewa Gentry, Ocean Pointe, West Loch). Find him in Room 208 at the Capitol, call him at 586-6080 or email replopresti@Capitol.hawaii.gov.