Faga'alu

Faga'alu is a village in central Tutuila Island, American Samoa. It is also known as Faalu.[1] It is located on the eastern shore of Pago Pago Harbor, to the south of Pago Pago. American Samoa's lone hospital, Lyndon B. Johnson Tropical Medical Center, is located in Faga'alu. The village is centered around Fagaalu Stream.

Faga'alu

Faalu
Village
Faga'alu is located in American Samoa
Faga'alu
Faga'alu
Coordinates: 14°17′47″S 170°41′1″W / 14.29639°S 170.68361°W / -14.29639; -170.68361Coordinates: 14°17′47″S 170°41′1″W / 14.29639°S 170.68361°W / -14.29639; -170.68361
Country United States
Territory American Samoa
CountyMaoputasi
Area
 • Total0.41 sq mi (1.07 km2)
Population
 (2010)
 • Total910
 • Density2,200/sq mi (850/km2)

Faga’alu has been named one of the best places to surf in American Samoa.[2] It is one of thirteen villages in American Samoa that have been declared Marine Protected Areas.[3]

HistoryEdit

In April 1941, members of the 7th Battalion showed up in villages throughout Tutuila Island. Later that month, the battalion cleared large jungle areas and began on the construction of the Camp Samuel Nicholas in Faga'alu.[4]

GeographyEdit

Faga'alu Bay is located between Niuloa Point in the south and Tulutulu Point in the north. The bay is considered a part of “outer Pago Pago Harbor.” The main drainage in the Faga’alu watershed is the Faga’alu Stream and its 8 tributaries. The stream is known as Matafao Stream in the drainage's upper reaches near Mount Matafao. Smaller drainages are situated on the southeast and northeast sides of the village. Matafao Stream begins at around the 1,400 ft. contour and continues downslopes to a stream fall. It becomes Faga’alu Stream at around 500 ft. above sea level. It discharges into the Pacific Ocean in Faga'alu Bay. Gobie fish, Mountain bass, and Freshwater eel have been observed in Faga'alu Stream.[5]

Most of Faga’alu is located at elevations well above potential tsunami elevations, and also set back a considerable distance from the ocean.[6]

EconomyEdit

There were 53 commercial business enterprises found in the village as of 2000. Several of these are located along the shoreline road and Dr Jim Turner Rd. Businesses include two bakeries, grocery stores, retail shops, and a laundromat. A quarry operation is located between the 100–125 foot contour at the west end of Faga’alu. It is operated and owned by Samoa Maritime. As of 2000, the Samoa Maritime Quarry generated around 500 cubic yards of reject material per week.[7]

The LBJ Hospital complex consumes seven acres. The location of the hospital is a former marsh which was filled in the early 1960s in order to accommodate the hospital.[8]

LBJ Tropical Medical CenterEdit

Lyndon B. Johnson Tropical Medical Center is the only hospital in American Samoa and the only prescription pharmacy on the island. It has been ranked among the best hospitals in the Pacific Ocean. It is home to an emergency room and there are doctors on duty at all hours.[9][10]

TourismEdit

Faga’alu is home to Virgin Falls, which is a tourist destination on the island. A 0.6-mile hike past the LBJ Tropical Medical Center leads to a small rock quarry. From there, a trail climbs past a series of waterfalls, known as Virgin Falls. Several of the waterfalls have pools used for swimming.[11][12]

Faga’alu is home to Le Fale Pule Lodge, which sits high up on a hillside above Matafao Elementary School in Faga’alu. The hotel offers panoramic views of Pago Pago Harbor, and is located 300 feet above sea level. Four of the rooms are in the main house, while there's also a separate cottage with outdoor Jacuzzis.[13]

In 1972, the Bureau of Outdoor Recreation approved a project to develop a park in Faga'alu Bay. Faga’alu Park is located at the outer part of Pago Pago Harbor and is a grassy park with picnic tables and a white-sand beach.[14][15][16] A boat ramp has been constructed at Faga'alu Park on government-owned land administrated by the Department of Parks and Recreation. The construction was initiated after the former public boat ramps at Fagasa and Pago Pago were damaged from the 2009 tsunami. The park is used for recreational activities such as picnicking, swimming, fishing, and camping.[17]

On Tutuila Island, the majority of sea turtle sightings take place in Faga'alu Park, Lion's Park in Tafuna, and Gataivai (in Pago Pago Harbor).[18]

DemographicsEdit

Population growth[19]
2010 910
2000 1,006
1990 1,006
1980 757
1970 900
1960 531
1950 395
1940 197
1930 106

As of the early 1980s, 21 percent of Faga’alu residents were born abroad. By 1990, 42 percent of residents were born outside of American Samoa. As of the 1990 U.S. Census, the village was home to 153 houses. Historically, residential development has taken place along the south and north sides of Faga’alu Stream. Another residential area is found upland of Faga'alu Park along the shoreline road and adjoining steeper slopes.[20]

Notable residentsEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ https://www.fodors.com/world/australia-and-the-pacific/american-samoa/hotels/reviews/le-falepule-584466
  2. ^ Swaney, Deanna (1994). Samoa: Western Samoa and American Samoa. Lonely Planet. Page 162. ISBN 9780864422255.
  3. ^ http://www.radionz.co.nz/international/pacific-news/284786/more-villages-to-join-american-samoa-marine-protection
  4. ^ Kennedy, Joseph (2009). The Tropical Frontier: America’s South Sea Colony. University of Hawaii Press. Page 203. ISBN 9780980033151.
  5. ^ http://www.botany.hawaii.edu/basch/uhnpscesu/pdfs/sam/Pedersen2000vol2AS.pdf (Pages 25-1, 25-4 and 25-5)
  6. ^ http://www.botany.hawaii.edu/basch/uhnpscesu/pdfs/sam/Pedersen2000vol2AS.pdf (Page 25-16)
  7. ^ http://www.botany.hawaii.edu/basch/uhnpscesu/pdfs/sam/Pedersen2000vol2AS.pdf (Pages 25-12 and 25-16)
  8. ^ http://www.botany.hawaii.edu/basch/uhnpscesu/pdfs/sam/Pedersen2000vol2AS.pdf (Page 25-13)
  9. ^ Swaney, Deanna (1994). Samoa: Western Samoa and American Samoa. Lonely Planet. Page 161. ISBN 9780864422255.
  10. ^ United States. Congress. House. Committee on Natural Resources. Subcommittee on Indian, Insular, and Alaska Native Affairs (2017). Assessing Current Conditions and Challenges at the Lyndon B. Johnson Tropical Medical Center in American Samoa: Oversight Hearing before the Subcommittee on Indian, Insular and Alaska Native Affairs of the Committee on Natural Resources, U.S. House of Representatives, One Hundred Fifteenth Congress, First Session, Tuesday, July 25, 2017. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Publishing Office. Retrieved 4 February 2018.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  11. ^ Swaney, Deanna (1994). Samoa: Western & American Samoa: a Lonely Planet Travel Survival Kit. Lonely Planet Publications. Page 179. ISBN 9780864422255.
  12. ^ Schyma, Rosemarie (2013). Südsee. DuMont Reiseverlag. Page 268. ISBN 9783770176946.
  13. ^ Stanley, David (2004). South Pacific. Moon Handbooks. Page 484. ISBN 9781566914116.
  14. ^ Rawlings-Way, Charles (2016). Lonely Planet South Pacific. Lonely Planet. Page 303. ISBN 9781786572189.
  15. ^ Atkinson, Brett (2016). Lonely Planet Rarotonga, Samoa & Tonga. Lonely Planet. Page 151. ISBN 9781786572172.
  16. ^ https://www.lonelyplanet.com/american-samoa/tutuila/activities/faga-alu-park/a/poi-act/1456133/362248
  17. ^ http://www.samoanews.com/node/6833
  18. ^ https://www.sprep.org/att/IRC/eCOPIES/Countries/American_Samoa/10.pdf (Page 39)
  19. ^ "American Samoa Statistical Yearbook 2016" (PDF). American Samoa Department of Commerce.
  20. ^ http://www.botany.hawaii.edu/basch/uhnpscesu/pdfs/sam/Pedersen2000vol2AS.pdf (Page 25-12)