Honolulu mayor, panel to discuss future of Blaisdell Center

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Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell welcomed a panel of experts from the Urban Land Institute (ULI) Daniel Rose Center for Public Leadership to Honolulu this week to provide technical assistance on creating a vibrant culture and arts district in urban Honolulu anchored by the redevelopment of the Neal S. Blaisdell Center complex.

Experts will present their initial findings and recommendations to the public this Friday, March 7, from 9-11 a.m. at the Mission Memorial Auditorium, 550 South King St. The event is free and open to the public and media and will also be televised live on Olelo Channel 55.

“I’d like to thank the Urban Land Institute for sending this panel of experts to help with the city’s efforts to redevelop the Blaisdell Center,” said Mayor Caldwell. “The options they present will reflect their experience with similar projects and best practices from the mainland tailored specifically to Honolulu’s needs. The most important part of this process is public input – and the ULI presentation begins these discussions. I am hopeful that this will be the start of bringing all voices together to decide what’s the best plan for the Blaisdell complex.”

The Blaisdell Center celebrates its 50th birthday this year. The city says it also faces rising maintenance and renovation costs teamed with competition from newer, more accessible facilities on the mainland.

The Blaisdell Center complex falls within the State of Hawaii Community Development Authority (HCDA) regulated Kakaako Community Development District, blocks from a future rail transit station and surrounded by historic Thomas Square Park, the Honolulu Museum of Art and Museum of Art School, McKinley High School, and several medical institutions.

In addition to the live broadcast this Friday at 9 a.m. on Olelo Channel 55, the presentation will rebroadcast on Olelo Channel 49 on the following dates and times: March 19 at 7 p.m., March 20 at 9 a.m., March 24 at 10:30 a.m., and March 29 at 10 p.m.

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