HONOLULU (AP) — A Hawaii Supreme Court ruling is a partial victory for a company that wants to build a giant telescope, but the embattled project still faces another legal hurdle.

The court's Wednesday ruling prevents a telescope opponent from having a contested-case hearing over the state land board's decision to allow the University of Hawaii to sublease mountaintop land to telescope builders.

Such a hearing would have further stalled the Thirty Meter Telescope project. Opponents say the telescope will desecrate land some Native Hawaiians consider sacred, while supporters say the telescope will advance scientific knowledge and that the location is among the best places in the world to build. Several other telescopes already stand on the Big Island mountain.

A construction permit appeal is still pending before the state's Supreme Court.