Trail association awarded $3M to acquire land in Ka‘u

The state Board of Land and Natural Resources awarded more than $3 million in conservation funds to the Ala Kahakai Trail Association to acquire more than 1,700 acres of land in Ka‘u.

During a meeting Friday, the BLNR awarded the association two conservation grants.

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The first, in the amount of $2.4 million, is for the acquisition of 1,363 acres of land at Kaunamano; the second, for $875,000, will allow the association to acquire another 348 acres at the Manaka‘a Fishing Village.

The association has sought to acquire both parcels for some time. According to its website, the parcels are home to several Hawaiian cultural sites and include more than 4 miles of the Ala Kahakai National Historic Trail, a 175-mile trail that encircles much of the island and is administered by the National Park Service.

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According to the association’s website, the acquisition of both sites will prevent further development on those lands and protect them for historic purposes.

The BLNR also awarded several other conservation grants to preserve sites throughout the state, including a $500,000 grant to the Division of Forestry and Wildlife to acquire 2,780 acres in Kona for a conservation easement by the Haloa Aina Royal Hawaiian Sandalwood Farm.

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