New Waikōloa public library receives $1.9 million in state funding to complete design

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The nonprofit Friends of the Library-Waikoloa Region offers a daily bookmobile in Waikōloa, but have been working for a permanent site for years. (Friends of the Library-Waikōloa Region)

The new Waikōloa Public Library will receive $1.9 million in capital improvement funding from the State of Hawaiʻi to complete the full design.

The library is planned for a 2.6-acre lot within the County of Hawai’i’s Kamakoa Nui Subdivision.

The effort began 14 years ago, in the living room of then state Rep. Cindy Evans. Residents of Waikōloa made their plea: “Please. We have to bring a library to the community.”


In February, the Hawai’i County Council unanimously passed a resolution authorizing a 65-year, no-cost lease for the site with the Hawaiʻi State Public Library System to construct and operate a library. An Environmental Assessment for the project is underway, and community input will be solicited as part of the process.

“Now, with the release of this funding, the state librarian will be able to take the next steps to design this new facility,” said Rep. David A. Tarnas of the Big Island in a press release. “It is an exciting time for Waikōloa residents to be able to be part of the design and construction of a new library facility in the Waikōloa community.

“I urge the state librarian’s design team to do lots of community engagement to inform and involve Waikōloa residents and ask for input about the design of a new community library.”


State librarian Stacey A. Aldrich said: “For many years, community members have passionately advocated for a library to serve the residents in this area, and I’m delighted that the county and state are working together to make it a reality.”

If Gov. Josh Green approves the budget passed by the Hawaiʻi State Legislature earlier this year, the Waikōloa Public Library will receive an additional $13 million to begin construction following the approval process.

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