A sea wall in Waialua has divided a community. Some neighbors want it gone while the property owners who had the wall built are fighting to keep it.

Hoomana Place residents testified at a city hearing today saying the sea wall that was built in 2014 obstructs access to the beach front and the beach access way.

Grand View Apartments Inc. had the wall built, and is now seeking approval from the Department of Planning and Permitting to keep it.

“There was a significant wave event in 2014 that eroded away the frontage of that area, eroded away the access way,” Peter Young, Grand View Apartments’ Representative said. “There was some emergency measure taken to correct that.” 

Hoomana Place residents say that the wall needs to be taken down to provide access to the beach.

“I guess frustration is the biggest description of how I feel,” Kelly LaPorte, Hoomana Place resident said. “It’s one thing to want to protect your own property and I’ve got no problem with that, but when it’s at the expense of the public. Of right of access to the seashore, that’s what I got a big problem about and that’s why I needed to testify today.”

In a statement the DLNR said it has opened a case on this matter following enforcement proceedings a few years back.The state decided that the property owners needed to get authorizations from the City and County of Honolulu.

Senator Gil Riviere says there needs to be more public input on the matter.

“I don’t believe that they’ve offered enough of that. I believe today is the first day when the public has had the chance to comment,” Sen. Gil Riviere, (D) Waialua, Haleiwa, Kaneohe.

The Department of Planning and permitting has 45 days to make a decision on the permit request.