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Posted on: May 24, 2022

Department of Management invites public opinion about proposed Halau of Oiwi Art in Wailuku

The Department of Management invites residents to share their ideas for the proposed Hālau of ʻŌiwi Art in Wailuku Town. An online survey is now open as a follow-up to Friday’s Open House featuring questions about the budding Wailuku Arts District and the Hālau of ʻŌiwi Art.

More than 50 residents gathered at the Maui Academy of Performing Arts’ Promenade Food Court to discuss possibilities and potential for the county’s first cultural center devoted to hula and associated arts.

“We encourage everyone to take the survey to participate in the early planning process,” Mayor Victorino said. “The planned Hālau of ʻŌiwi Art belongs to the people of Maui County. Hula is the living history of the Hawaiian people. This project will allow everyone to learn and experience the depth of cultural wisdom perpetuated through hula.”

Hālau of ʻŌiwi Art is a key component of the Wailuku Arts District Management Plan. Residents may learn more and participate in early planning by taking a survey at www.wailukulive.com/rewailuku. Click on Hawaiian cultural center “take survey.

Since 2020, a coalition of Maui kumu hula has been working with the county to lay groundwork for “Hālau of ʻŌiwi Art.” Mayor Victorino announced the concept on Feb. 8, and included it in his Fiscal 2023 budget request to the Maui County Council.

The Council’s Budget and Finance Committee passed it. The Council’s first reading is scheduled for Thursday, May 26. Although project plans are still conceptual, planners estimate the construction will cost $54 million. The Department of Management has requested $43 million from the County's FY23 budget and $11 million in federal assistance. 

The Hālau of ʻŌiwi Art will be located adjacent to the new Wailuku parking structure currently under construction. The center will be the first of its kind in any county dedicated to the study, practice, celebration and perpetuation of hula and various ‘ōiwi arts. The community will enjoy classrooms, studios, exhibit and events space in addition to programming. 

To remain engaged and informed, visit www.wailukulive.com/hoa or www.hoamaui.com for project updates. Sign up for announcements about future Hālau of ʻŌiwi Art events, in addition to interactive online feedback platforms. Go to https://www.wailukulive.com, scroll down to “Want to stay updated” section on bottom of page and provide your email. 

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