Cultural Preservation & Conservation
Hawaiian Memorial Park is committed to the preservation of the historic sites and cultural resources located on their lands. To this end, they have developed and continue to develop partnerships with community organizations to manage these wahi pana (storied landscapes) in manners consistent with traditional practices and customs.
Perhaps the most sacred resource located within the Hawaiian Memorial Park cultural landscape is Kawa‘ewa‘e Heiau. Nearly 1000 years old and listed on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places, the high chief Olopana originally built this heiau as a temple. It would eventually be the site of his death at the hands of the famed Hawaiian Akua (god) Kamapua‘a. In recent years, this site and other historic sites on the property have been plagued by trespassers and vandals. HMP’s development plans include working with the area’s ancestral descendants to take appropriate steps to protect the sites sacred resources. For this reason, the exact location of resources are not being disclosed on this website or to the media.
In addition to the partnerships being developed with ancestral descendants, HMP has committed to placing all their remaining lands in a conservation easement. This easement would ensure no further development would take place on the property. This effectively leaves the entire property in conservation or open space use in perpetuity, with 128 of 156 acres remaining vegetated lands. These lands were previously used for cattle ranching and industrial agriculture. Native flora species have been identified in the area during biological surveys but the expansion will have minimal impact.
Looking from the Old Pali Road north toward Kaneohe, National Geographic 1924. You can clearly see the enitre valley was in pineapple. The arrow shows the location of HMP.
Construction of Kaneohe Elementary School near the vicinity of HMP in 1955. The
area was in pasture and dairy.
A rare and endangered damselfly was identified on a lower section of Hawaiian Memorial Park’s undeveloped property. The damselfly habitat is outside of the proposed cemetery development. The reality is that without the expansion, there will be no safeguards for this threatened species. Like Kawa‘ewa‘e Heiau, the damselfly’s habitat would be at risk of human impacts, invasive species or even flooding and drought.
Hawaiian Memorial Park is committed to establishing a plan to protect the habitat and the species. It will even include habitat preservation measures and species monitoring to ensure the population of damselflies is protected on an ongoing basis from various threats.