DEPARTMENT OF LAND AND NATURAL RESOURCES
LAURA H. THIELEN, CHAIRPERSON
Phone: (808) 587-0401
Fax: (808) 587-0390
For Immediate Release:
Ossipoff - Designed Library, Kaua'i Plantation House
Queen’s Hospital Medical Library, Grove Farm Manager’s House and the Bond Estate are among the nine most endangered historic sites in the state.
The annual list is compiled by Historic Hawai‘i Foundation in collaboration with the State Historic Preservation Division.
“The broad cross-section of sites reminds us that everyone’s history matters. The list includes sites and buildings from different eras in Hawai‘i’s history,” said Historic Hawai‘i Foundation Executive Director Kiersten Faulkner. “Large and small, all of these places contribute to our understanding of the past and the contributions that they still make today. They connect us tangibly to the unique traits and distinctive features of communities on all the islands.”
Faulkner added that the list is intended to draw attention to threats to historic places that occur from a variety of sources, including neglect, natural disaster, misunderstanding or malice.
The 2007 Most Endangered Historic Sites list includes two sites on Hawai‘i Island, two on O‘ahu, one on Moloka‘i and four on Kaua‘i.
“We treasure the connections we find with our past and with other people through the places that tell our stories,” said State Historic Preservation Officer Laura Thielen, who also serves as Department of Land and Natural Resources chairperson. “The strong sense of identity that comes with preserving historic places is important to all of us, whether they are buildings in Chinatown, plantation houses on Kaua‘i, Japanese shrines and sacred places or rural heritage.”
HHF sought nominations from the community and worked with SHPD preservation professionals to select the sites. While inclusion on the list does not automatically protect or preserve the sites, it is hoped that the list will raise public awareness, and inspire the community to take action.
Listing on last year’s Most Endangered Historic Sites prompted significant community and property owner commitment to saving several places. A proposal to demolish the Walker Estate in Nu‘uanu Valley was withdrawn after a public outcry and the San Ju Pagoda in Honolulu Memorial Park has also seen renewed commitment to restoration and maintenance. The Plantation Manager’s House in ‘Ewa Plantation Villages received a grant of $200,000 for improvements.
The 2007 list of endangered sites and a discussion on what threatens each site is featured in the November issue of Honolulu magazine. Honolulu has partnered with HHF on the annual Most Endangered Historic Sites list since its inception in 2005.
The complete list of 2007 Most Endangered Historic Sites is:
Kalahikiola Congregational Church (Kohala, Hawai‘i Island), a church built in 1855, was damaged in the Big Island earthquake in October 2006. The congregation is committed to its repair, but needs funding.
Bond Homestead (Kohala, Hawai‘i Island), the oldest wooden structure in Kohala, built in 1840, also suffered earthquake damage. The property owner has no plans to demolish the buildings, but also has no plan to repair them.
Kalaniana‘ole Hall (Kalamaula, Moloka‘i) is a 1937 community center damaged by years of neglect and disrepair. The Moloka‘i Enterprise Community has plans for restoring the building and has received a grant from the Office of Hawaiian Affairs to begin work on the most critical repairs. More funding is needed.
Kekaha Sugar Mill (Kekaha, Kaua‘i) is a 1954 upgrade to the 1898 Kekaha Sugar Company, which ceased operations in 2000. It stands empty as the new property owner evaluates options. The Kaua‘i West Side Watershed Council would like to see the mill become a community focal point that contributes to the economic vitality of the area.
Grove Farm Manager’s House (Lîhu‘e, Kaua‘i) was built for the manager of the Grove Farm sugar plantation in 1913. It suffers from neglect and stands vacant as the property owner determines its long-range plan for the area.
Kôloa Jodo Mission (Kôloa, Kaua‘i) is one of the first Japanese shrines on Kaua‘i, built in 1909. The congregation struggles with the cost of upkeep, as well as the need for skilled carpenters to do the work.
Wainiha Stream Bridges (Hanalei, Kaua‘i) help define the Hanalei rural landscape and are on both the Hawai‘i and National Registers of Historic Places. The Department of Transportation moved up scheduled replacement of the bridges, built in 1957, after discovering structural damage in early November. The temporary replacements are prefabricated modular steel bridges, but long-term design should be compatible with DOT’s adopted context sensitive design guidelines for the historic road.
Austin and Pantheon Buildings (Honolulu, O‘ahu) contribute to the Chinatown National Historic District and the ambience of Nu‘uanu Avenue. The adjacent Hawai‘i Theatre Center needs room to expand its stage and reinvest in its facility, which may result in demolition of the smaller buildings. HTC will meet with preservation professionals to determine its full range of options, which may include saving the historic facades.