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10 Bright Ideas for Improving Chinatown
Honolulu, Hawaii

Each of these ten ideas for improving and rejuvenating Honolulu's historic Chinatown district won $4000 in a July 2006 "Chinatown Honolulu Bright Ideas" contest organized by the City and County of Honolulu.

Movie Night at Aala Park
Have an Asian ethnic movie night similar to Waikiki's "Sunset on the Beach" several times during the year that will include booths featuring asian food and products. Encourage Asian cultural groups to participate and showcase Asian start-up companies. The award for this bright idea went to Kelfred Chang.

Mural Art for Chinatown
Beautify and improve Chinatown by using blank walls as canvasses to promote art, education, history, culture and social justice, encouraging both locals and visitors to tour the area. The award for this bright idea went to Helene Bron.

Arts and Crafts Fairs in Chinatown
Organize arts and crafts fairs in Chinatown to capitalize on increasing tourism and cruise ship passengers at the Aloha Tower and to attract residents to shop from local vendors and tour the Chinatown area. The award for this bright idea went to Hui-Fang Bauer.

Expand the Weekly "Hawaii Chinese News"
Provide internships for interested high school and college students to prepare news stores and features on individuals and businesses in Chinatown's residential and merchant communitys for this bilingual, Chinatown-based publication that also reaches older ethnic Chinese. The award for this bright idea went to Elroy Chun.

Chinatown Night Market
To create an evening activity to curtail undesirable activity in the area and revitalize the identity of Chinatown through a night market at Smith-Beretania Neighborhood Park during the monthly Honolulu First Friday Event, to bridge the Honolulu Arts and Cultural Districts with Chinatown. The award for this bright idea went to Zheng Qirong of the Chinese Culinary Arts Society.

Chinatown Cultural Showcase
Have a professional producer work with Chinatown residents to showcase their talents and create a multicultural variety show to celebrate the cultures and traditions that coexist in Chinatown. The award for this bright idea went to Elaine Evans of the Hawaii Theatre Center.

Historic Preservation Plaques
Install museum-quality plaques on the corners of buildings, to describe their historical or cultural significance to Chinatown. The plaques would encourage self-guided and commercial cultural tours of Chinatown. The award for this bright idea went to JoDee Hunt

Chinatown Walking Tour of 2036
Make an in-depth analysis and description of major Chinatown landmarks, not as they exist now but as they would (or would not) exist in several distinct alternative futures and create a Chinatown walking tour of 2036. The award for this bright idea went to Jake Dunagan and staff of the Hawaii Research Center for Future Studies at the University of Hawaii at Manoa.

Nuuanu Stream Pedestrian Mall
Create a pedestrian bridge connecting Pauahi Street to Aala Park, beautifying Nuuanu Stream into a major tourist and resident attraction with its natural sites, historical buildings, gardens, shops and restaurants in the area. The award for this bright idea went to Val Yanagihara.

Parking Improvements
Promote easy-access, convenient, and affordable parking as an integral part of the Chinatown neighborhood by implementing meters that accept both coin and electronic card readers. Use other cities as models to explore other parking systems, such as advanced parking metetes pre-paid parking cards, and cellular phone paid parking. The award for this bright idea went to Kim Coffee-Isaak.



The Chinatown Honolulu Bright Ideas program was created by Mayor Mufi Hannemann, the Ford Foundation, and the Hawaii Arts Alliance. The Ford Foundation contributed $20,000 and five local banks matched those funds: American Savings Bank, Bank of Hawaii, Central Pacific Bank, First Hawaiian Bank and Hawaii National Bank.

See also:
- More About Chinatown Honolulu
- More About Honolulu



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