Your Voice Must be Heard! City Council to Consider Natatorium Resolution

You’ve read about it. Now support it!

The new design concept for preservation, repair and reopening of the War Memorial Natatorium [see the image below] is on a Honolulu City Council committee’s agenda for this Thursday, Jan. 19.

What’s Going On?

The Zoning and Housing Committee will vote Thursday on a resolution urging the mayor and city officials to include the new design concept in the ongoing environmental impact study of the Natatorium’s future.

If the city does not study this design, there’s a danger there will be no analysis of any viable, affordable preservation option.

That would mean the only EIS competition for the city plan to demolish the Natatorium would be conversion to something like a land-based swimming pool. Total enclosure. Pumps and filters.

No one on the preservation side favors conversion. It’s not feasible. It’s not affordable. It’s not necessary to achieving the real goals: preservation of the iconic, historically important state World War I memorial and restoration of a safe, healthy swim basin.

A graphic depicting the NTHP design concept for Natatorium restoration

What Can You Do?

Testify at Thursday’s hearing. In person, or by submitting a written statement in advance.

Here’s what to do:

To register to testify in person, first look at the Zoning and Housing Committee agenda. Then follow the directions for registering. The easiest option is to fill out the online testimony registration form. Be sure to fill in the “Agenda item” box with “Resolution 16-311.” Your meeting date is 01-19-2017. Select “Zoning and Housing” in the committee drop-down menu. Fill in the other required items with the appropriate information.

To submit written testimony, first look at the Zoning and Housing Committee agenda. Then use the online testimony registration form to submit your statement. Be sure to fill in the “Agenda item” box with “Resolution 16-311.” Your meeting date is 01-19-2017. Select “Zoning and Housing” in the committee drop-down menu. Fill in the other required items with the appropriate information. You can paste testimony into the “Written Testimony” box or attach a Word document or PDF.

What to Say

Your statement should be brief and in your own words. You should certainly say that you support Resolution 16-311; you should ask the committee to approve the resolution.

You can say why you think preserving, repairing and reopening the War Memorial Natatorium is important. And you can say that you think the design concept proposed by the National Trust for Historic Preservation is a great approach: It would be affordable and get the job done at last, after far too many years of delay.

Finally, you can say that you believe the environmental impact study now underway must include analysis and fair consideration of the NTHP design.

Mahalo All Around

Deep and sincere thanks to Councilmember Kymberly Marcos Pine, chair of the Zoning and Housing Committee, for sponsoring and advocating for this important City Council resolution.

Likewise, mahalo to you – whether you’re a resident of Oahu, live in Hawaii, or are reading this on the mainland or elsewhere — for making sure that your voice is heard this Thursday. What you say is important. It will have an impact.

Categories: Elected officials, Environmental Impact Study, Friends of the Natatorium, and National Trust for Historic Preservation.


  1. Alan Earle Black

    I hope that the Natatorium can be saved. Although a Canadian, I have been to Waikiki several times (9 so far) and love the Natatorium/Kaimana Beach area. It would be a shame if the Natatorium were torn down.

  2. Angie westfall

    The Natatorium is war memorial, an integral part of the history of Waikiki and Hawai’i, a beautiful architectural monument, and a unique piece of engineering. There should be no question about saving this landmark. I fully support Resolution 16-311. PLEASE SAVE THE NATATORIUM!

  3. Trudie

    Save the Natatorium! My husband’s family spent a lot of good times swimming here! Would like it restored, so future generations could honor those war heroes!

  4. Tony Villanueva

    A War Memorial. In Honour of the men and women who gave their lives in service. They didn’t give up on us when we needed them. We can’t give up on the symbol of their service now when it needs our support. Would anyone allow the Vietnam Memorial to be disassembled because it needed repair? How is this any different? I don’t even understand how this is a question.

  5. Cesar Contreras

    I old like to know how I can get actively involved. Please send me more information on meetings and events. Thanks


  6. The Memorial to Hawaii Veterans of The Great War must be preserved. The Natatorium must be removed and returned to its natural state as a beautiful beach for all to enjoy. The Natatorium is an eyesore and if remodeled will continue to be a taxpayer problem for eternity. I have lived in Hawaii for 50 years and its current state is evidence of the City & County’s inability to make a decision. You cannot have valid sporting events in a saltwater pool and the proposed design is an invitation to spreading contagious disease from bacteria and viruses that will thrive. Leave the Memorial, move it to another location or give it to the military. Please, do the right thing!