Press Release: Construction Resumes On $22.3 Million P?hoa District Park

Fulfilling the County of Hawai‘i’s pledge to expand healthy recreational opportunities for the families of Lower Puna, construction on the $22.3 million P?hoa District Park has resumed. Park construction was paused in 2014 due to a rapidly advancing lava flow threatening P?hoa. After the lava flow threat level was downgraded, and after consultation with the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory and Hawai‘i County Civil Defense, the park project was given the green light to resume.

“Our commitment to the families of Puna remains strong,” said Mayor Billy Kenoi. “One of our priorities has always been to create more safe places for our kids to stay active and healthy. In collaboration with our Hawai‘i County Council, we are pleased to move forward with this project that will provide access to positive recreation for Hawai‘i Island’s fastest-growing communities.”

When complete, this 29-acre first phase of the P?hoa District Park will include a covered play court building, two baseball fields, two multipurpose fields, a playground, concession building, comfort station, accessible walkways, and ample parking. These features will complement P?hoa’s existing recreational facilities that include the P?hoa Community Aquatic Center, P?hoa Neighborhood Facility, and P?hoa Skate Park.

The park is also adjacent to the P?hoa Senior Center, which reverted to its previous use as a fire station during the lava flow threat. That facility is currently being converted back into a senior center, housing senior activities for k?puna in Lower Puna.

The Puna Community Development Plan, adopted by the Hawai‘i County Council in 2008, identified the need for a district park in Lower Puna. A comprehensive planning process involving the community, the County, and project designers began in 2012 to ensure these new facilities reflect the recreational needs of Puna’s residents.

For more information, please contact Jason Armstrong, Public Information Officer, at (808) 961-8311 or

2 replies
  1. Hazen Komraus
    Hazen Komraus says:

    I’d really like the Mayor to address how a $22.3million dollar sports complex is appropriate for Pahoa right now. I’m all for expanding the sports options for our students, but this is MUCH more than the current or projected student body could even utilize. It fails to provide anything to anyone who is not a high school student or athlete parent. Pahoa has no Parks. This $22.3 million (!!!) does not provide for a walking path for our Aunties and Uncles, it does not provide a playground for children or parents. It does not provide for a dog park. It does not have a bike trail, jogging path, fountain, nature walk, or anything else that parks traditionally include. It has two to three times as many sports fields as needed, parking, and a concessions stand. Where does that concessions money go, and will it be serving a bunch of unhealthy food? Shouldn’t that be a private expenditure? Pahoa is in desperate need of ANY homeless and mental services. It is in need of medical facilities, it is in need of parks, sidewalks, a community police officer on foot, and sidewalks. I have a hard time understanding how it needs sports fields adequate for all of Hilo. Keaau has massive facilities and we have existing facilities. I am all for improving our sports facilities, but how is this justified? I apologize for not having heard about this earlier in the process, so that i could address it then.

  2. Kelly
    Kelly says:

    I agree with Hazen.
    In addition, there is oozing lava a few miles uphill.
    Seems crazy (to me) to risk such a large investment when
    volcanic activity continues, and is actually increasing.

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