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Dillingham Airfield Tenants Can Stay, State Continues Leasing From US Army

Dillingham Airfield is a general aviation airport operated by the Hawaii Department of Transportation.
Hawaiʻi Department of Transportation
Dillingham Airfield is a general aviation airport operated by the Hawaii Department of Transportation.

The state Department of Transportation intends to rescind its previously announced lease termination of Dillingham Airfield on Oʻahu’s North Shore. Now, airfield tenants can continue to operate for the time being.

The department announced Thursday it will not be terminating its lease with the U.S. Army quite yet.

The state has leased the property from the Army since 1962 — and has allowed commercial and civil aircraft use at the facilities.

But last year, the state decided to end its five-year lease agreement early due to concerns with water usage limits and compliance.

Airfield tenants were notified on short notice that they would be evicted when the state intended to terminate the lease.

The DOT gave tenants two extensions as stakeholders discussed the future of the airfield. The last extension was set to end this December.

State transportation director Jade Butay on Thursday said the combined efforts of DOT staff, lawmakers, the Army and tenants gave him confidence that concerns can be addressed and resolve any issues.

The state’s lease of the airfield ends in July 2024.

The DOT says coordination continues on the possibility of a long-term lease for operation of Dillingham Airfield.

In a statement from the Army, Col. Dan Misigoy, commander of U.S. Army Garrison Hawaiʻi said, “The Army appreciates the collaborative efforts that have been made to bring various stakeholders together to discuss Dillingham Army Airfield. We will continue to work with the State in this process and look forward to the continued dialogue.”

Casey Harlow was an HPR reporter and occasionally filled in as local host of Morning Edition and All Things Considered.
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