For more than 160 years, Parker Ranch environmental, economic and cultural contributions have been a major influence in creating the Waimea we know and love today.
The Ranch’s last private owner, Richard Smart, took his role as Waimea’s biggest landlord seriously. Because he recognized that growth was inevitable, he devised the Parker Ranch 2020 Plan (now called the Waimea Town Center Plan), intended to set aside sufficient lands to allow for uncongested growth and development, maintain the community’s rural “village” character, and still provide for future business growth, employment, and housing for residents.
To fund ranching operations, Smart authorized the sale of low-yield pasture lands that are now the site of world-class luxury resorts along the Kohala Coast. The thriving community of Waikoloa Village is on former Parker Ranch land. When he died in 1992, Smart left the Parker Ranch in a trust to support healthcare, education and charitable giving through named beneficiaries in the Waimea community: Parker School Trust Corporation, Hawai‘i Preparatory Academy, North Hawai‘i Community Hospital, and The Richard Smart Fund of the Hawai‘i Community Foundation.
Parker Ranch continues to be an important contributor in the community, and is also proud to serve as a training area for numerous public agencies including the Hawai‘i County Police Department, Police Special Response Team, and Department of Corrections, DLNR Police and Forestry, State of Hawai‘i Sherriff, and many more.
Most recently, Parker Ranch, Inc., signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the County of Hawai‘i that will result in the development of a district park for Waimea. About 24 acres will be provided to the County Department of Parks and Recreation, which will work with the community to design a district park that will include two football/soccer fields and a youth baseball field. Plans also envision a community gymnasium, parking, and gathering areas.