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Waimea Valley Now Whole and Forever Protected
We have some wonderful news to share. The last piece of Waimea Valley has finally been purchased and integrated into the entire valley. Consequently, Waimea Valley is now whole and forever protected. We are grateful to have been involved with this transaction as a result of our involvement with the Trust for Public Land.
The article below was published by the StarAdvertiser on February 17, 2019.
The transfer of the last privately owned piece of Waimea Valley to a nonprofit cultural conservation group was marked Saturday with a blessing and dedication ceremony.
On hand were representatives from Hiipaka LLC, the Trust for Public Land, and North Shore Community Land Trust, which teamed to raise state, county and private funds to purchase the 3.75-acre property, called Puukua, when it was put up for sale in 2014.
Also in attendance were officials from the state Department of Land and Natural Resources, the City and County of Honolulu, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs and Ahahui Kaahumanu and the descendants of Kahuna Nui Hewahewa, the high priest who presided over Waimea Valley after Kamehameha I’s unification of the islands.
The ceremony coincided with the 182nd anniversary of Hewahewa’s death.
The nonprofit Hiipaka was established as a steward for the valley after some 1,800 acres of land were transferred to its ownership and management through a collaboration between the city, DLNR, the U.S. Army, the Trust for Public Lands and OHA in 2003. With the purchase of Puukua by the Trust for Public Lands earlier this year, Hiipaka is now responsible for management of the entire valley.
Hiipaka will work with the Hewahewa family to care for burial sites and other culturally significant features within the property, conduct native reforestation work and host volunteer days for community members.
Puukua sits adjacent to an ancient heiau honoring the Hawaiian god Lono and is itself home to two burial sites and traditional dry-stack stone structures, according to the Trust for Public Land.