Wai'anae board seeks landfill plan update
By James Gonser
Advertiser Leeward Bureau
The Wai'anae Coast Neighborhood Board voted Tuesday to ask Sphere LLC to attend the group's Sept. 4 meeting and make a presentation on its plans to develop a landfill at the old Kaiser Cement quarry off Pa'akea Road.
Residents are concerned because the landfill would be the third on the Leeward Coast, the only area of O'ahu with public dump sites.
Board member Patty Teruya said it has been three years since the last presentation and some of the plans have changed.
Lawrence Wilderman, a member of Sphere LLC, made a presentation to the Wai'anae Neighborhood Board about the project in 1998. The 208-acre site is zoned for agricultural use but has been a quarry site since 1959.
According to Sphere, the site could take at least 200,000 tons of trash a year for 14 years before filling up.
During the 1998 presentation, residents raised concerns about the landfill, including taking agricultural land for industrial use, routing trucks carrying 30 to 40 tons of material over substandard roads and possible harm to water, drainage and air quality.
Board member David Escalante said the board took no action in 1998.
The company was asked at the time to return and respond to community concerns but has not done so.
Sphere representative Bernie Kim was listed on Tuesday's agenda to give a presentation on the project, but canceled because the company believes the previous presentation fulfilled its requirement for a public hearing.
The company last week sent a letter to about 100 Ma'ili residents and board members saying it had recently completed purchase of the property at the proposed landfill site and is seeking city and state permits to move the project forward.
The only two landfills on O'ahu are both on the Leeward Coast the city's Waimanalo Gulch Sanitary Landfill near Ko Olina, and PVT Landfill, a private operation for construction and demolition debris on Lualualei Road.
The city wants to expand its landfill because the site is expected to reach capacity next year.
Reach James Gonser at firstname.lastname@example.org or 988-1383.