Think About It: No Discovery Recovery - KFVE, K5-Hawaii News Now, Local Programming

October 24, 2016

Think About It: No Discovery Recovery

When is reality not reality? One instance is when public perception overrides it. The CEO of the Hawaii Children's Discovery Center, along with others, told us last week in a front page story that it's safe to bring our keiki to the wonderful children's center. But constant news stories, pictures of the homeless still encamped in the area, the sensory disgust of the smell of feces or urine around the Center, concerns about parking lot vandalism, these are all tough circumstances to overcome. For many interested parents and grandparents, the idea that you'd be parking your car in a possibly unsafe area and having to deal with unsavory issues is quite enough to keep them from reconsidering a trip down to Kaka'ako.

In an area which should be celebrated for its medical school and children's center, many people still have the sense through their senses- eyes, ears, and noses- that something is afoul and amiss in an area fronting the ocean which ought to be a cherished place to visit and learn. And until something longer term is developed and in place for the law-abiding but unfortunate, displaced wanderers squatting throughout our towns, it will be a tough marketing effort to make wary parents come back to the Children's Discovery Center in droves.

Revenue there is down 30%, according to Center CEO/Chair Loretta Yajima. No business can afford to have that trend continue. So what will be done beyond what has already been done over the past 18-months to lower the number of people making this area an outdoor home? This is not just a question for a four-block area in Kaka'ako. How many other places are locals avoiding due to perception and reality? Think about it…

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