HONOLULU (KHON2) — The Honolulu Police Department is cracking down on illegally parked mopeds in Waikiki. The enforcement was prompted by calls about mopeds blocking sidewalks, but moped riders said they do not have anywhere else to park.
They can hear them coming from far away and more are being spotted parked on the sidewalks of Waikiki, mopeds are popular among tourists and locals, but certain businesses said they could also be a nuisance.
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The Waikiki Business Improvement District Executive Director Jennifer Nakayama said more businesses are calling HPD to report mopeds parked where they are not allowed.
“Mopeds that are either chained to a light pole or a signage pole or perhaps even not even locked up at all and just left on the sidewalk,” Nakayama said. “But nonetheless, it becomes a hazard for those customers or guests or even residents that are coming in and out of the stores.”
HPD said mopeds may be parked in a stall or at a bicycle rack with signage that allows for mopeds.
The Waikiki Mopeds owner Roger Whitmarsh said parking availability is a big issue, and he has a stack of tickets to show for it.
“$105, $35, all of these tickets,” Whitmarsh said. “Really there’s nowhere for them to park, so where do they park? They park on the sidewalk and you know if they don’t lock it to anything it’s going to get towed away and that becomes a big problem.”
In a way, they would rather risk getting a ticket for unauthorized parking and pay roughly $100 or less, rather than deal with an impounded moped costing five times the ticket.
Whether it be residents, a business or moped riders, they know parking needs to be addressed or the cycle will continue.
Waikiki Representative Adrian Tam said, “I’m hoping that we could come up with some solutions on how we can better address the parking overall in general, whether it is bicyclist, riding on the sidewalk or just regular traffic issues, from moped noises we have to do something.”
Nakayama said she also hopes for more solutions as the city embraces the “Complete Streets” program, meant to address pedestrian, drivers and bicyclists’ concerns.
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“That is being looked at, in a holistic way by the City and County of Honolulu and strategically within Waikik,” Nakayama said. “Parking, this is always at a logistical premium, just because of the footprints that we don’t have in Waikiki.”