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Restore Ka'apuni Drive Public Beach Access

Restore Ka'apuni Drive Public Beach Access

Unlock the Gates at Kaʻapuni Drive

Ka'apuni Drive in Kailua (on East Oahu) maintains a few beach accesses within their neighborhood. Though Ka'apuni Drive and its associated beach accesses were conferred privately to the neighborhood in 1987, the public has been allowed to use the beach accesses for decades. In 2019, after 30 years of being openly used by the public, the Ka'apuni Community Association voted to install locked gates. These gates, however, were left open between 7am-7pm. In October 2020, the homeownerʻs association took another step towards denying public beach access and voted (15-14) to keep the gates permanently locked. Many of the “votes” were cast by homeowners who only live in Hawaii parttime or were allowed multiple votes to coincide with their multiple properties in Ka'apuni.  

For decades, families living in the surrounding area have counted on the Ka'apuni Drive beach accesses for safe passageway to the beach in Kailua. This beach access area is commonly known as “Flagpoles”. For hundreds of families, the closure of this beach right of way entails over a half of a mile detour (either north or south) until the nearest public right of way. These are families who have been using these accesses openly for all manner of beach activity (including surfing, beach cleanups, and birthday parties) for more than half a century.

The Oahu Chapter, along with community groups and beach users, are asking the Ka'apuni Community Association to not deny or limit public beach access that so many local residents rely upon to enjoy the beach. The Chapter is working with the community, Native Hawaiians, the City and County of Honolulu, and the Ka'apuni Community Association to re-establish public beach access.