Haiku Stairs damaged by landslide, may never reopen

News

Mother Nature may have put an end to a popular and illegal trail. Haiku Stairs, also known as Stairway to Heaven, was damaged by a landslide.

Hikers say it happened between Friday night and Saturday morning, when the islands were hit by a storm that brought gusty winds and rain.

Haiku Stairs has been closed for nearly 30 years, but people still hike it.

“There’s an either or solution. You keep it or you get rid of it for safety sake,” said resident Bob Crosby.

For residents living near the entrance to the Stairway to Heaven, there is a downside.

“There are cars, more cars than there should be,” said Crosby.

Foot traffic through private property and parked cars lining the neighborhood are all problems many residents would like to see go away.

“We have residents who are being confronted in their front yards, being assaulted in their yards, being verbally accosted. That’s not acceptable,” said Honolulu City Council member Ikaika Anderson.

Last year, a task force made up of landowners and residents was created to agree on a plan on what to do with Stairway to Heaven.

Now, with the recent damage to the stairway, what will be done next?

“We really need to know from the Board of Water Supply standpoint, what’s it going to cost to fix the damage and are they willing to fix the damage?” said Anderson.

Anderson helped form the task force and would like to see a managed access point that would allow the trail to reopen.

“In order for that to happen, my understanding is the current owner, the Board of Water Supply, would have to be willing to transfer the property to another government entity,” he said.

“If it’s a managed access point not through the community, then that’s fine and if it’s safe, that’s fine, but right now, it’s not looking very safe,” said one resident.

As for the future of the stairs, if a decision can’t be met, the stairs could be removed all together.

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