Resolution advances to explore possibility of moving city hall to Kapolei

Could Honolulu’s city hall one day move from Honolulu Hale to Kapolei?

The Honolulu City Council’s budget committee unanimously passed a resolution Wednesday to explore the option.

The resolution calls for a study that would outline the costs and feasibility associated with the construction of a new building and relocation, job effects and an alternate use for Honolulu Hale.

Council member Ernie Martin introduced the measure, saying renovations currently underway at Honolulu Hale limits the council and administration.

He added that renting private offices in downtown Honolulu creates an added expense that could be better used if the city moved to a better facility.

“I think it behooves us at least not to explore that opportunity to consider having — not necessarily replacing these chambers — but another public facility out in Kapolei,” he said.

“On the city council, we can’t even have our staff near us,” added council member Ann Kobayashi. “They’re on another floor and nine of us share one small waiting room in the front because there’s no room.”

Several who testified before the committee Wednesday opposed the idea.

“I think that’s a really bad idea. You have this beautiful architectural historic building there, right in the middle of downtown Honolulu where everything is, and it seems to me if you want to relocate to Kapolei, the secret is you’re wanting to limit accessibility to the public,” one person said.

The resolution goes to the full council for adoption on July 9.

If passed, the report would need to be completed by December 31.

Read Resolution 14-107 in its entirety.

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