HONOLULU (KHON2) — There’s a new proposal that seeks to turn 12th Avenue in Kaimuki into a shopping-friendly pedestrian mall.

The street would only be open to one lane of traffic, and street parking would be removed to allow more outdoor seating and shopping.

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There is a push to turn 12th Avenue in Kaimuki into a pedestrian mall.

The street would only be open to one lane of traffic and street parking would be removed to allow more space for outdoor seating.

KHON2 learned it is not an idea that everyone is onboard with. The nonprofit Envision Waikiki said the idea had been previously proposed when outdoor dining was popular during the pandemic.

The Neighborhood Board said pushback focused on businesses losing street parking, Jason DeMarco pointed out the two municipal lots nearby.

“So, the loss of these handful of parking stalls is not going to be very acute,” Demarco said. “These businesses will still be strongly supported by these municipal parking lots.”

There is concern from area businesses, however. The owner of Talk Kaimuki told KHON2 off camera that this sort of plan would kill her business — even with added seating.

The owner of Toni’s Lamps & Shades said added seating would not mean anything for her business.

“The parking is already difficult here, I don’t know if a lot of people know that,” Carol Moore said.

We’re all kind of getting back through COVID, we’re getting back there, we’re not 100% back yet and that would definitely affect different businesses like mine that would have probably to take steps backwards if we have to close the street right in front of my location.”

Carol Moore, Toni’s Lamps & Shades owner

The Department of Transportation Services said they have not met with Envision Kaimuki about their idea and added that there would need to be broad support from the community and elected officials for it to pass. DTS would also need to conduct a traffic study to figure out benefits and drawbacks and said in part through a statement:

“DTS is open to the integration of pedestrian malls and the conversion of other City roads into temporary and permanent walkable streets as a part of smart growth, Complete Streets, and transit-oriented development.”

Department of Transportation Services

Vehicle traffic would only be allowed makai-bound toward Harding Avenue if the plan goes through. The Neighborhood Board stressed that it is a grassroots effort by and for the Kaimuki community.

“This is something that is of interest to, you know, the residents and people who live in Kaimuki as a way to, you know, make their own daily lives better,” DeMarco said.

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Envision Kaimuki said they will share more details about their plan during a Neighborhood Board meeting on Thursday, March 23.