2007

Kuilima Defaults

 

Friday December 21, 2007

foreclose on the Turtle Bay Resort on December 20, 2007.  Kuilima Resort Company had been warned of its default on July 25, 2007 and again on August 31, 2007, the same day it was granted an extension to its tentative subdivision approval.

Paragraph 8 of the Foreclosure Complaint states, "Borrower utilized the proceeds of the loan for, among other things, (i) refinancing the existing indebtedness owed by Borrower to a third party lender, (ii) Borrowers making a one-time distribution to the beneficial owners of Borrower, (iii) financing a portion of the development, construciton and other costs associated with the Project." (emphasis added.)

Investors have been worried about the value of these debts for months.  Read herehere and here.  In May, Kuilima made a special arrangement with the lender to defer payment and admitted to investors that it would be unable to make interest payments beginning June, 2007.

Credit Suisse now claims a balance due of $283 million, including penalties and interest on what was originally a first mortgage balance of $275 million.

The value of a $125 million second mortgage is unclear.

Both equity mortgages were taken on a short term basis when the developer thought it could effortlessly proceed with long dormant expansion plans.  A potential sale to Starwood Hotels fell through in July, 2007.  Read these news reports 1234.

How can this project be allowed to proceed with such a precarious financial situation?  - 12/21/07

 

News Articles on the Foreclosure


Honolulu Advertiser and here
Honolulu Star Bulletin
Pacific Business News

 

 

Now continued three times, the receivership hearing on the Turtle Bay Resort is now scheduled for July 10, 2008 in Circuit Court..  (Updated 03/16/08).

Credit Suisse filed to

 

Pupukea-Paumalu Hoolaulea

 

Monday December 10, 2007


One irony of yesterday's Ho'olaule'a festival celebrating Pupukea-Paumalu's permanent protection was the fact that numerous ambassadors of the powers that be thanked the community for succeeding."

"The famous scenic cliffs over Sunset Beach and Pipeline almost became the site of a housing project. The preservation of those Pupukea-Paumalu lands, more than a thousand acres of unspoiled North Shore beauty, now represents that rare example of one community's triumph over the powers that be.

National Geographic Notes Development Concerns

 

Monday December 10, 2007


Indeed.

Development threatens to beat out natural beauty on O'ahu so much so that the current issue of National Geographic's Traveler magazine ranks the island "in serious trouble" as a vacation destination."

Pancho Sullivan to Share Triple Crown Winnings

 

Tuesday November 13, 2007

Putting his money where his heart is, Pancho Sullivan has pledged to donate ten percent of his winnings from this year’s Triple Crown of Surfing to help Keep the North Shore Country.
Sullivan previously won the Haleiwa Jewel of the Triple Crown and is currently ranked 12th on the World Championship Tour of Surfing. He is definitely a threat to win this year’s Triple Crown and will surf with Keep the North Shore Country stickers on all of his boards throughout the competitions.

Having grown up on the North Shore, Sullivan has a special affinity for its powerful waves, natural beauty and the community in which he and his family live.  “The North Shore is such a precious place!  We really have to be careful we don’t destroy it with inappropriate development.  I am proud to support Keep the North Shore Country and their efforts to wake the City up to reasonable decision making.”
Mounting legal challenges against well funded developers and municipalities is expensive.  Fortunately, Keep the North Shore Country has overwhelming support from the community and concerned residents like Pancho Sullivan.

Spain Places Moratorium on Coastal Development

 

Tuesday November 13, 2007

From Guardian Unlimited online:

"The Balearic islands are to freeze all construction along the most delicate parts of coastlines and around the islands' capitals, which have been blighted by property developments since mass tourism first arrived in Spain in the 60s.

The tide has turned against rampant development and governments around the world are reconsidering the value of preserving precious natural resources. 

(I)t is understood that it (the government) will place a moratorium on development in one of Mallorca's largest untouched bays, and in urban marshlands in Ibiza and Palma de Mallorca, where construction work was set to begin. Rural land around the newly constructed Son Espases hospital in Palma, located near a medieval monastery, will also be saved."

Appeal Update

 

Wednesday October 17, 2007

Appellants' Opening Brief, the written appeal of the Circuit Court rulings against Keep the North Shore Country and for Kuilima Resort Company, was filed in the Intermediate Court of Appeals on September 27, 2007.

The City and County of Honolulu have requested additional time to file their Answering Brief and their deadline is now December 4, 2007.  Kuilima Resort Company didthe same and their new deadline is December 6, 2007.

Keep the North Shore Country will likely have six weeks to reply to the Answering Briefs after they are filed by the City and by Kuilima.  Oral arguments, if ordered by the Court, may not occur until next spring.  Needless to say, a ruling on the appeal is not likely for several months and then an appeal to the Hawaii Supreme Court by whichever side loses at the Intermediate Court is possible.

Keep the North Shore Country is committed to ensuring the City's compliance with Hawaii enironmental law.  This application for subdivision approval is the classic example of when a Supplemental EIS should be conducted and the Hawaii Supreme Court has shown great concern in protecting the environment.

This legal challenge against a well funded developer and the City is expensive, yet so very important to the future of Oahu and the State of Hawaii.
 Please help with a donation to the legal fund. 

The

Southern California Sierra Club Article

 

Wednesday October 17, 2007

"Southern Sierran" is the monthly publication of the Sierra Club serving Los Angeles and Orange Counties in California.  The October issue features a front page article on the Turtle Bay Resort expansion

Kuilima's Subdivision Application Extended

 

Wednesday October 17, 2007

Kuilima Resort Company has received a six-month extension to complete the Turtle Bay Resort Subdivision Process from the Honolulu Department of Planning and Pemitting.  The new deadline for satisfying the outstanding conditions of the Tentative Bulk Lot Subdivision Approval is March 29, 2008. Kuilima is entitled to request one more six-month extension, after which time no extension can be granted unless construction plans have been signed and construction has actually begun on the infrastructure improvements.

Hawaii's Turtle Bay Resort Plans Still a Sore Point

 

Friday September 07, 2007


An undercurrent to the discussions is Kuilima Resort Co.'s proposed development at Turtle Bay...."

"The city has begun the process of inviting public comment that could lead to changes to planning documents that guide development in Ko'olauloa and the North Shore.

Hedge Fund Facing Opposition on Hawaiian Plans

 

Monday July 30, 2007

The San Diego Business Journal on the Web writes about opposition to the Turtle Bay Resort Expansion plan and the reluctance of investors to step into the maelstrom.

Starwood Backs Out

 

Wednesday July 18, 2007

Starwood Hotels & Resorts has decided to not move forward on a purchase agreement with Oaktree Capital Management , LLC, on the Turtle Bay Resort.

More Iwi Found in Kakaako

 

Saturday July 07, 2007

"Thomas Dye, president of the Society for Hawaiian Archaeology, estimates that there are actually hundreds more remains to be unearthed at the site, which he considers a rare archaeological find."
and
"Dye said any professional archaeologist would have made that prediction, given the sample size and type of soil, when the first 11 sets were originally discovered. And it was clear from the beginning that further investigation would have been appropriate for the site, he said."

- From The Star Bulletin

Methodist Church Pressures Oaktree

 

Friday July 06, 2007

"If a company is so bent on making money that they can't consider the needs of the people who live there, that's against our social principles," said Barbara Grace Ripple, pastor of a United Methodist church in Kaaawa and former superintendent of the Hawaii district. "I don't think Oaktree has the interest of the people of the Koolau region at heart. Oaktree is in this to make as much money as they can and get out."

Surfboard Auction raises $2425

 

Friday July 06, 2007

The E-Bay auction of a surfboard Andy Irons rode in winning the 2005 Triple Crown was a great success.  Thanks to everyone who helped spread the word and to those who made the auction a success, especially Judi Oyama, who put it together.  And, of course, thanks to the generous bidder who contributed $2425 to own this piece of surfing history. 

Hawaiians Call for Eng Resignation

 

Wednesday July 04, 2007

`Ilio`ulaokalani Coalition, a statewide grassroots organization comprised of cultural practitioners who advocate for the perpetuation of our culture and the preservation of our sacred lands and the protection of our ‘iwi kupuna is calling for the immediate resignation of Mr. Henry Eng as Director of Permit & Planning for the City & County of Honolulu and a member of the Mayor’s Cabinet..

A press conference has been scheduled at Honolulu Hale on Thursday, July 5th at 10:00am.  `Ilio`ulaokalani invites everyone to attend the press conference and stand in solidarity for the resignation of Mr. Eng. 

Appeal Filing Update

 

Wednesday July 04, 2007

The lawsuit brought by Keep the North Shore Country and joined by Sierra Club, Hawaii Chapter, calling for a supplemental environmental impact statement on the proposed Turtle Bay Resort expansion is still in the appeal process.  The Notice of Appeal was filed on June 19, 2007 and the appeal briefs are not yet scheduled by the Hawaii Intermediate Court of Appeals.

Our lawsuit, originally filed on May 19, 2006, was consolidated with a similar suit brought by Unite Here Local 5, the hotel workers' union.  When the Union settled their labor dispute with Oaktree, they agreed to drop their suit.

The Honorable Sabrina McKenna heard Motions for Summary Judgment on November 13, 2006 and ruled in favor of Kuilima Resort Company and against us.  We filed a Notice of Appeal on January 8, 2007.  Before the briefs were submitted, a technical error was noted in the court paperwork:  the Union's case was still referenced as active, even though they had withrawn.

Additional paperwork was filed by the Union's attorney to clarify that they are no longer party to this lawsuit.  When that was recorded, the clock began anew for filing an appeal.

This legal challenge is still very much alive and it will not be affected by any changes in ownership at Kuilima. 

Redesign Requested at Ward Development Because of Extensive Iwi Kupuna

 

Thursday June 28, 2007

The State Historic Preservation Division is now asking the General Growth Properties development in the Ward area to make major redesigns because of extensive iwi kupuna, or ancestral Hawaiian burials.

'Perhaps this highlights the degree of care with which archaeologists should test for burials at an early stage of the planning and design of such projects," said Murakami (an attorney for Native Hawaiian Legal Corp.). "It is always better to do the right advance archaeological work first before committing to construction which must be stopped to protect those cultural resources which could have been identified earlier.'"

Pupukea Paumalu Land Now Preserved

 

Thursday June 28, 2007

The Trust for Public Land formally acquired the 1100+ acres of land once slated for development by the Obayashi Corporation.  After 20 years of hard work by many community leaders,the North Shore Community Land Trust was able to organize a successful purchase of this beautiful piece of land that will now be preserved for future generations to enjoy as open space.

Hawaii Tourism Benefits by Keeping the Country Country

 

Wednesday June 27, 2007

"The importance of “Keeping the Country Country” is quickly understood by visitors who learn about Kuilima’s plans for the North Shore. Oahu needs a healthy balance of both Town and Country if it is to remain a viable and thriving place to live and visit. Will visitors continue to come to Oahu if the entire island is increasingly urban, increasingly developed? Let’s have the conversation before it is too late."

Neighbor Islands Development Concerns

 

Wednesday June 27, 2007

Residents and visitors of Oahu are not alone in concerns over large scale development.  A recent survey found 76 percent of residents no longer want any new hotels on their islands and a majority of residents concerned that tourism expansion is occuring at the expense of the residents.

Free Concert and Beach Cleanup

 

Wednesday June 20, 2007

Barefoot Wine and the Surfrider Foundation have recently launched the Barefoot Wine Beach Rescue Project, a national initiative to make beaches in-need across the country clean and "barefoot-friendly" this summer. Meet at the Ala Moana Beach Park lagoon near Magic Island for the beach cleanup from 2:30 to 4:30 pm.  The free celebration afterwards will be held at the Local Motion Brew Moon in Waikiki, 1958 Kalakaua Ave.  Use the complimentary valet service and enjoy Barefoot Wine, surfside fare and a live performance by Jill Cunniff, lead singer of Luscious Jackson.
Surfrider is a great supporter of Keep the North Shore Country.  Please help support Surfrider.  -

Oahu Can't Support Turtle Bay Expansion

 

Wednesday June 20, 2007

"The proposed massive expansion of the Turtle Bay Resort by Oaktree Capital Management LLC, and its subsidiary, Kuilima Resort Co., threatens to turn O'ahu into one continuous urban center. The huge impact it will have on traffic will make it impossible to feel like you are in the "country" anywhere on O'ahu."

Read the article

Loving Hawaii to Death

 

Sunday June 10, 2007

Hawaii has been able to maintain a healthy balance between development and preservation, but is now at an important crossroad, according to a California attorney who is familiar with our fair state.

"In short, this single expansion could dramatically and irreversibly alter Oahu’s North Shore forever. Those thousands of tourists expecting to see the Hawaii of their dreams will instead discover that, like a dream, it has receded into imagination."

Honolulu Advertiser Article

Turtle Bay Debt Softens

 

Friday May 11, 2007

Standard and Poor's Leveraged Commentary & Data (LCD) website reports that "Turtle Bay Resort term debt softened this week after lenders heard that cash was insufficient to meet an interest payment due at the end of June." The resort needs to refinance a first mortgage of $275 million and a second mortgage of $125 million that was originally borrowed in 2005. "According to LCD, "The new situation was in contrast to a lender call a few months ago, when management reassured investors that the situation was fine, with the property on the auction block. "The company has struggled with lawsuits and controversy about environmental impact and potential unwanted effects of a planned expansion of the resort.

Polo in Paradise Fundraiser

 

Monday May 07, 2007

Opening day of the the 2007 North Shore Polo Season was dedicated as a fundraising event for Keep the North Shore Country.  After two polo matches, the Saloon Pilots entertained the crowd into the early evening.  Besides t-shirt, bracelets and sticker sales, the bottom line was helped by delicious chicken and beef tacos, and flan, prepared by Just Tacos of Honolulu.  

Defend Oahu Coalition sold many of their poplular, green Keep the Country Country t-shirts.  In fact, the green team in the second game wore these shirts to help remind everyone about our efforts.

Thanks to Mike Dailey and the Hawaii Polo Club for their support and best wishes to a successful season.  Enjoy the polo matches, the beach and, often, an after-game concert every Sunday though September. Phone 637-8401 for information.

World Professional Surfers Support Keeping the Country Country

 

Saturday April 14, 2007

Pancho Sullivan, one of only 45 top-level surfers on the elite World Championship Tour, has written an article about the Turtle Bay Resort Expansion so that surfers around the world can understand what is at stake on our pristine North Shore.  He encourages surfers from around the globe to take a moment and voice their concerns.

Legislative Resolutions on Expansion Impacts

 

Saturday April 14, 2007

The 2007 Legislature passed several resolutions that would study the potential impacts of the proposed Turtel Bay Resort expansion.

HCR 194 would convene joint hearings of the House and Senate Labor Committees to consider the likely impacts that thousands of new employees would bring to the rural North Shore communty that has scarce housing, an overloaded roadway and little unemployment.

HR 153 would convene a hearing by the House Transportation Committee on the likely impacts an expansion would have on the state highway.  The State Department of Transportation and City and County Department of Planning and Permitting would be invited to participate.

SR 107 would create a special task force to study the likely impacts an expansion would have on the state highway and what mitigation might be possible or necessary.

Supplemental EIS Bill Deferred to Next Year

 

Saturday April 14, 2007

SB 642 clarifies the law relating to supplemental environmental impact statements.  It passed out of the Senate and advanced through the House Energy and Environmental Protection Committee before stalling in Representative Ken Ito's Water, Land, Ocean Resources and Hawaiian Affairs Committee.  We will continue to support its passage in the next legislative session where it will only need to pass out of two House committees, WLH and JUD.

Koolauloa Cultural Assessment Bill Deferred

 

Saturday April 14, 2007

SB851 would require a cultural assessment and recommend a minimum shoreline setback of 750 feet for any development in the Koolauloa District, which stretches from Kahaluu to Waimea Bay.  This bill passed out of the Senate, but was not scheduled for hearing in the House Water, Land, Ocean Resources and Hawaiian Affairs Committee.  Iwi kupuna, or ancestral burials, are sacred and should be respected by everyone.  It is likely that additional legislation on this important issue will be introduced next year.

Kuilima Still Looking for Partners and / or Buyers

 

Thursday March 29, 2007

According to an article in the Honolulu Star Bulletin, Kuilima Resort Company is close to an agreement with Starwood Hotels on "a portion of the Turtle Bay Resort."  The most telling quote for many readers, however, is found in the final paragraph:  

"Big Island developer Brian Anderson, whose company, Anekona LLC, owns the Ilikai hotel in Waikiki, said, "There's too much opposition -- they're furious, and I ain't going to touch that."

Beach Rally Draws Attention to Kuilima's Lack of Concern for `Iwi

 

Monday March 19, 2007

Approximately 200 people participated in a march and beach rally to protest Kuilima Resort Company's lack of concern for `iwi kupuna  (Hawaiian burials) in their plans to expand the Turtle Bay Resort.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

The Appeal Has Been Scheduled

 

Monday March 19, 2007

The briefing schedule is now in place for our appeal of the lower court's rulings on summary judgment for Kuillima Resort Company and against our motion for summary judgment.  The briefs will likely take a couple months to file.  It is not known at this time if there will be oral briefs or when the appeals judges may rule.

City Council Approves Deadline Resolution

 

Wednesday January 24, 2007

Resolution 06-366, Requesting the Department of Planning and Permitting to establish appropriate deadlines for project commencement and completion as conditions in unilateral agreements relating to significant zone changes, was approved by the City Council,

Governor Repeats Call to Reduce Land Development Need

 

Tuesday January 23, 2007

In her fifth State of the State Address, Governor Lingle spoke again about redirecting our economy away from land development. "(W)e have to change our economy from one based on land development, to one fueled by innovation and the new ideas generated by our universities and a highly-trained workforce.
Some think it is unrealistic to change our decades-long reliance on land development as the foundation of our economy.
Some think it is easier to keep doing what we have been doing.
They think it is too hard to change.
But, hard or not...change will happen."

Hawaiian Burials Group Seeks Development Moratorium

 

Monday January 22, 2007

"Friends of the Burials Protection Program today called on Gov. Linda Lingle's administration to impose a moratorium on all land development until the state resolves concerns tied to Native Hawaiian burial sites.

Hundreds of burial remains are being improperly stored when they should be reinterred, according to the group, which also contends that the state Historic Preservation Division is severely understaffed and failing to meet its mission to protect Native Hawaiian burials."

When is Land Under-developed?

 

Monday January 22, 2007

Cynthia Oi, writing in her Honolulu Star Bulletin column, Under the Sun, makes some poignant observations about land development in "Money Measures in Land Conflicts."

She notes that "Land development, too much or too little, lies in the eye of the beholder, and in the islands, it is the most significant of issues, provoking more conflict than any other."

and concludes "There is value in sustaining parts of Hawaii different from the rest of the world. There should be spaces set aside for people content to live with enough, in balance with what the land and sea provide. There should be places left untouched as much for their beauty and as for the vitality harbored in unburdened, underdeveloped ground." 

State Urges Turtle Bay Resort to Revise Layout

 

Sunday January 14, 2007

A key state official is warning the Turtle Bay Resort to drastically revise its plan to build up to five new hotels or it could face delays and other issues because of the strong chance that human remains will be found at the site.

A lawyer for the resort's owners, Kuilima Corp., responded that the project's financing could be jeopardized if the state doesn't back off.
An October letter to the developer from State Historic Preservation Division administrator Melanie Chinen states: "There is a high probability that one or more of the proposed hotels is located in an area within which numerous (as yet undiscovered) subsurface burials are located."
Chinen recommends that Kuilima do more testing in the area or "revisit and revise" its master plan to avoid the burial areas. She further suggests that the project be set back about another 500 to 650 feet from the shoreline than planned.

Kuilima submitted an archeological mitigation plan and then revoked it when the State recommended the master plan be reworked.  According the to Honolulu Advertiser, Kuilima does not intend to change its master plan and is under no obligation to do so, (Kuilima attorney Terry) O'Toole said. "All of the contingencies related to inadvertent burials are ones we're just going to have to deal with going forward," he said.

The public still awaits the first sign of a concerned developer who listens to community concerns and truly wants to Keep the Country Country.  When will Kuilima heed the will of the public? 

The Appeal is Filed

 

Saturday January 13, 2007

The recent court rulings in favor of Kuilima Resort Company and against Keep the North Shore Country and Sierra Club, Hawaii Chapter, were appealed to the Supreme Court and the Intermediate Court of Appeals of the State of Hawaii on January 8, 2007.

The legal battle continues.  Read the media release.

Howard Dicus's PBN Commentary

 

Saturday January 13, 2007

In "Bird's Eye, Obstructed, and Jaundiced Views," Howard Dicus notes that "it is possible to appreciate all sides of the issue and still feel the something needs to be done."

"You can forgive community opponents for their jaundiced view that any environemental impact statement that's old enough to drink needs to be revisited."