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Bathrooms open at Reed’s Bay Beach Park in Hilo

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Video courtesy of the Office of the Mayor, County of Hawaii

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The county Department of Parks and Recreation announces the opening of new public bathrooms at Reed’s Bay Beach Park in Hilo.

A ceremony Monday blessed the hollow-tile comfort station, accessible walkways and new landscaping that complete a county investment of more than $1.5 million to re-establish Reed’s Bay Beach Park as a safe, inviting and family friendly recreational facility.

Isemoto Contracting Co. Ltd. built the bathrooms and related improvements, while landscape architecture firm Leonard Bisel Associates LLC designed the upgrades.

“People don’t ask much in our community. But I think what people really expect from us in government is parks that are safe and clean, bathrooms that are nice and well kept,” Mayor Billy Kenoi said during the ceremony. “It shows people that their children and families matter.”

Featuring two women’s stalls, one men’s stall and a urinal, the new bathrooms meet federal Americans with Disabilities Act, or ADA, standards and are connected to the County’s wastewater treatment system. Use of hollow-tile concrete blocks will ensure decades of public use without detracting from the park’s natural beauty.

“I think that we can all take pride that slowly but surely every project improves the quality of life for the people,” Kenoi said.

Related upgrades include new concrete sidewalks and driveway, security gate, bicycle racks, ADA-compliant drinking fountain, grass landscaping, and the trimming of a large banyan tree.

To accommodate participants of the rapidly growing sport of stand-up paddle boarding, the department also installed a paddleboard washing stand that’s unique to Reed’s Bay Beach Park.

Renee Godoy, senior pastor at Glad Tidings Church, used the theme of malama, or caring for the land, for her blessing.

“From the smallest detail to the largest, it’s really evident that there’s been a commitment to malama,” she said.

Completion of the first phase of park upgrades occurred last April.

With the help of the late U.S. Sen. Daniel K. Inouye, Hawaii County obtained a $248,525 federal grant that helped finance installation of concrete walkways complete with integrated seat walls, outdoor showers, drinking fountains and new landscaping.

A volunteer project contributed picnic tables and additional landscaping.

Located along majestic Banyan Drive, Reed’s Bay Beach Park serves to welcome people to the Waiakea Peninsula, which includes Hilo’s largest hotels. If offers safe ocean access for swimmers, fishermen and boaters with authorized moorings in the bay.

Comprising slightly more than four acres, the fully developed park includes mature trees for shade, grassy areas for play, and a protected bay for use by keiki and kupuna alike.

Off-street parking is provided at an adjacent, 2.3-acre site.

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