Home Lands agency to celebrate in Kapolei
Kuhio Day will see the dedication of the state department's new headquarters
On Prince Kuhio Day Wednesday, the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands and homestead residents in Kapolei will pay tribute to the legacy of a Hawaiian prince and U.S. congressman.
As a member of Congress, Prince Jonah Kuhio Kalanianaole authored the Hawaiian Homes Commission Act, which led to the creation of the state Department of Hawaiian Home Lands and its effort to provide homes for native Hawaiians.
The department is planning more than 2,000 homes in Kapolei and will dedicate its new headquarters -- Hale Kalanianole -- on Wednesday, Kuhio's 137th birthday.
"It's not just a building," said Shirley Swinney, president of the Maluohai Residents Association. "It's all that the department is doing now. It's helping to ensure the very spirit of the Hawaiian Homes Commission Act."
The celebrations begin that morning with a 1.1-mile processional from Kapolei High School to the building's dedication and a hoolaulea with food, entertainment, exhibits and crafts afterward.
There are about 552 homestead residents in Kapolei, and the department hopes to build more homes in its East Kapolei Phase 1 and 2 developments.
"The area is really going to be built out in the sense of providing homes and economic opportunities for people," said Lloyd Yonenaka, department spokesman.
About 70 percent of the people on the waiting list for homestead live on the Leeward Coast, according to department officials.
The homestead expansions coincide with various other projects in the area, including the University of Hawaii's West Oahu campus, other housing projects and the Ray and Joan Kroc Community Center nearby.
"As East Kapolei begins to grow, there will be an additional 1,500 homes," Swinney said. "Just the accessibility (to the department) alone will open so many doors, especially for the beneficiaries already there."
THE SECOND CITY
The Department of Hawaiian Home Lands has built or is planning several major developments in Kapolei that will add more than 2,000 homes, a major shopping center and a community center. They include:
» Maluohai Village:
The department has built 226 units on 38 acres.
» East Kapolei I:
A 97-acre parcel with 403 single-family homes, two commercial sites and a 4.4-acre park.
326 homes on 53 acres between Kapolei High School and Kapolei Middle School.
» East Kapolei II:
More than 1,200 homes are projected to be built on 318 acres west of the North South Road.
» Makana Ali'i mall:
Florida-based DeBartolo Development is planning a 1.5 million-square-foot regional mall on 67 acres in East Kapolei.
» Ray and Joan Kroc Community Center:
The Salvation Army is planning a 10-acre community center in East Kapolei funded in large part by an endowment from the estate of Joan Kroc, the wife of McDonald's restaurant founder Ray Kroc.
IF YOU GO
A processional to honor Prince Kuhio and dedicate the new Department of Hawaiian Home Lands building in Kapolei begins at 9 a.m. Wednesday from Kapolei High School. Participants will walk about 1 mile on Kapolei Parkway to Hale Kalanianaole, the new DHHL building.
The dedication ceremony begins at 10:30 a.m., followed by a hoolaulea at 11:30 a.m.
Police will close Kapolei Parkway from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. Parking will be available at Kapolei Middle School or along Kapolei Parkway.