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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Monday, May 21, 2001

Chevron plans Mililani Mauka gas station

By James Gonser
Advertiser Central Bureau

MILILANI MAUKA — Chevron USA has presented its preliminary plans for a $3 million gas station, convenience store and car wash on Meheula Parkway to the Mililani Mauka/Launanai Valley Neighborhood Board.

Ken Smith, Chevron's marketing manager for Hawai'i, said the project is in the early phases, but he hopes to open the center next year.

"With the growth of Mililani Mauka we think it is a good opportunity," Smith said. "Everything is pretty well in place and we are anxious to get started."

Chevron will use about a third of a 1.5-acre parcel located between the Castle & Cooke Homes sales office and the Mililani Mauka Recreation Center #5 on Meheula Parkway.

Residents at last week's meeting questioned access to the site and asked if alcohol would be sold in the convenience store.

Smith said the center is expected to be open 24 hours and the company intends to apply for a beer and wine license.

"We certainly appreciate the issues that come along with selling beer and wine in a community," Smith said. "We have some very strict policies that we enforce in terms of selling beer and wine."

Smith said clerks will check the identification of anyone under 30 years old buying alcohol and the refrigerated coolers with beer are locked after midnight. No consumption of alcohol or loitering is allowed on the premises.

"We will actually provide a set of eyes and ears in the community in case of trouble," Smith said.

Harry A. Saunders III, senior vice president of Castle & Cooke, said the developer is planning to install a deceleration lane and a one-way entry into the property from Meheula Parkway. Saunders said the lane could be used by drivers immediately after exiting the H-2 Freeway.

"As you approach that parcel from the freeway exit, there is no access to the property now," Saunders said. "They would then exit out on Ainamakua Drive. We have been working with the state and city to make sure this access won't cause any traffic tie-ups."

Saunders said if Chevron purchases the property next month as expected, then Castle & Cooke will move ahead with the permitting process. He said work on the access lane should be done before the station opens.

An office building or professional center is planned for the remainder of the parcel, which is already zoned commercial, Saunders said.

The board decided to table any recommendation on the issue until next month's meeting, Smith said, to allow residents more time to comment on the project.

Saunders said there is an existing Tesoro gas station across Meheula Parkway, but it cannot be entered across the divided road. With about 4,000 homes in Mililani Mauka, another station is appropriate and the placement would allow residents to easily fill their tanks on their way home from work.

Saunders said there should not be any conflicting traffic and parking issues.

"There is room for two stations, especially with the growth in Mililani Mauka," Smith said. "We fully intend to blend into the community and want to be a good neighbor."