Categorized | Environment, Featured, News

Volcanoes park seeking input on general management plan

The park provides Native Hawaiians a sanctuary for reclaiming ancient feelings of place.  The heartfelt expression of chant and dance on the volcano helps reconcile Hawai`i’s past with her future and reminds us that the culture of Hawai`i is very much alive. Photography by David Boyle.

The park provides Native Hawaiians a sanctuary for reclaiming ancient feelings of place. The heartfelt expression of chant and dance on the volcano helps reconcile Hawaii’s past with the future and reminds us the culture of Hawaii is very much alive. (Photography by David Boyle)

MEDIA RELEASE

You are invited to help create a vision for the future of Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. The park is seeking public participation in the development of a new General Management Plan that will guide Hawaii Volcanoes National Park for the next 20 years.

“As the Park looks to its 100th anniversary in 2016, we are excited to create a collective vision to prepare the Park for its next century” said Park Superintendent Cindy Orlando.

The park’s 333,086 acres encompass the summits and rift zones of two of the world’s most active volcanoes, Kilauea and Mauna Loa. They serve as habitat to endangered plant, insect, bird, bat, and sea turtle species, a spiritual reservoir for native Hawaiians, and a last vestige of Hawai`i as it was hundreds of years ago. Nearly 1.5 million visitors explore the park each year on 66 miles of scenic roadways and 155 miles of marked trails. There is bicycling, camping, backpacking, bird watching, lava flow viewing, evening programs, ranger-guided hikes, and accessible campsites and trails.

The long-range plan will answer “What kind of place do we want this park to be?”

It will serve as a guidebook for the future to help managers make decisions about how to best protect natural and cultural resources, what levels and types of uses are appropriate, what facilities should be developed, and how people should access the park.

It has been more than 30 years since the park’s previous master plan was completed. Since that time, the park has experienced increased visitation, advances in knowledge about ecological and cultural resources, and numerous volcanic eruptions with the resultant loss of buildings and roadways. In 2003, the park grew by 116,000 acres with the acquisition of Kahuku on the southwest slope of Mauna Loa Volcano. The planning effort will develop a strategic vision for the entire park, including Kahuku.

As a first step in envisioning the Park’s future, the National Park Service will host open houses on three islands—Hawaii Island, Oahu, and Maui. You are invited to come meet the planning team, learn more about the GMP planning process, and share your ideas, concerns and thoughts about this special place.

 This first formal “public scoping” comment period continues through June 30.

HAWAII ISLAND
Sunday, April 26 from 6:30 to 9 a.m.
Cooper Center Farmer’s Market (Information Table)
Volcano, Hawaii

Sunday, April 26 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Kilauea Visitor Center Auditorium
Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

Monday, April 27 from 5 to 8 p.m.
Aunty Sally Kaleohano’s Luau Hale
799 Pi‘ilani Street Hilo, Hawaii

Tuesday, April 28 from 5 to 8 p.m.
Naalehu Community Center
Naalehu, Hawaii

Wednesday, April 29 from 5 to 8 p.m.
Keauhou Beach Resort
Kailua-Kona, Hawaii

O‘AHU
Thursday, April 30 from 5 to 8 p.m.
East-West Center
Hawaii Imin Conference Center Koi Room
University of Hawaii-Manoa Campus
Honolulu, Oahu

MAUI
Friday, May 1 from 3 to 7 p.m.
Maui Community College
Pilina Building/Multi-purpose Room
Kahului, Maui

For information and to submit comments online, go to www.nps.gov/havo/parkmgmt/plan….

To submit comments by mail, write to Superintendent, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, P.O. Box 52, Hawaii National Park, HI 96718. For questions or information, call Park Planner Lora Gale at (808) 985-6303.

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