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Salt Lake is a generally residential, upper middle class community situated to the west of Honolulu on the island of Oahu. Salt Lake is a suburban neighborhood, comprised of various types of residential dwellings including town homes, single family homes, and condominiums. Ironically, Salt Lake derives its name from a body of water which is now a freshwater lake, and the majority of properties in Salt Lake are well out of range of the lake. Salt Lake is occasionally called by the name Aliamanu, which is a reference to a nearby extinct volcanic crater. Salt Lake is located in zip code 96818, which coincides with Senate District Fifteen and House District Thirty One. The modern history of Salt Lake dates back to the nineteen sixties, when the community was built in response to a demand for housing. As Honolulu expanded outwards in the early second half of the twentieth century, existing properties were insufficient to contain the growing population and communities such as Salt Lake and Pearl City were created and grew to meet the demand for housing. Certain parts of Salt Lake have outstanding views of the central plain of Oahu and the Pacific Ocean, as well as the mountain ranges of the island. Salt Lake was able to grow quickly in the 1960s and 1970s largely because of the ease in community between downtown Honolulu and Salt Lake. Transportation between Honolulu and Salt Lake can be achieved either through the Moanalua Freeway, Nimitz Highway, or the Queen Liliuokalani Freeway.
Salt Lake derives much of its population from surrounding military installations, especially Fort Shafter and Camp Smith, along with Pearl Harbor, and Tripler Army Medical Center. Salt Lake is about a mile away from the Honolulu International Airport, which is located to the south of the community along Nimitz Highway. Other important sites in the immediate vicinity of Salt Lake include the main United States Postal Office for Honolulu and Ke’ehi Lagoon. Generally speaking, residents of Salt Lake are second and third generation Asian Americans and European Americans, many of whom are military or ex military. According to statistics from the United States Census Bureau, Salt Lake is one of the ten most affluent communities in the state of Hawaii, with a median home value considerably higher than the neighboring towns of Pearl City and Kalihi. Salt Lake is served by Moanalua High School, which is consistently recognized as one of the best public schools in the entire state. Additionally, the Salt Lake region is home to Radford High School, Aliamanu Middle School, and Aliamanu Elementary School. The two private schools in the region are Holy Family Catholic Academy and the Saint Philomena Early Learning Center.
The largest shopping complex in Salt Lake is the Salt Lake Shopping Center, which is anchored by Longs Drugs and Safeway. The complex is also home to McDonalds, Radio Shack, and a number of smaller, local shops. Salt Lake is home to the Salt Lake – Moanalua Public Library, in addition to a satellite city hall. Salt Lake is notable for the Salt Lake Municipal Park, Salt Lake District Park, and a number of smaller recreational facilities. Salt Lake District Park in particular is often home to children’s sports events, including American Youth Soccer Organization matches. Salt Lake District Park also boasts basketball courts, tennis courts, a gymnasium, and a swimming pool. Although traffic can be rough at times, during light traffic it can take less than fifteen minutes to reach downtown Honolulu. Salt Lake hosts two especially notable annual events, the Menehune Classic (a marching band competition) and the Winter Craft Fair, which is an entrepreneurial gathering.