Kakaako 'urban village' up for public comment


POSTED: Thursday, May 07, 2009

Kamehameha Schools hopes to build an innovation center as well as up to seven high-rise residential towers in Kakaako over the next 15 years.





        The HCDA invites comments on Kamehameha Schools' Kaiaulu 'O Kakaako Master Plan:

» When: 4:30-7:30 p.m. today


» Place: Honolulu Design Center Cupola Events Theatre, 1250 Kapiolani Blvd.


» Other ways to submit comments: Online at www.HCDAweb.org, or call the special comment phone line at 587-7683




This evening, the public is invited to learn more about the master plan, called “;Kaiaulu 'O Kakaako,”; and to comment on it before the Hawaii Community Development Authority, which oversees redevelopment in the district.

HCDA staff is reviewing the master plan application and has until Oct. 9 to make a decision.

The agency deemed the application complete on March 23 and has a 200-day timeline in which to approve it. If no decision is made, the plan is automatically approved.

Kamehameha Schools hopes to build a mixed-use “;urban village”; with up to 2,750 dwellings, including lofts, townhomes and condos, in both low-rises and high-rises up to 400-feet tall on 29 acres bound by South and Halekauwila streets, Ward Avenue and Ala Moana.

The first phase includes developments along South Street, including the site of the now-vacant CompUSA, which Kamehameha Schools envisions as a mixed-use residential project.

Auahi Street is slated for transformation from mostly warehouses into a main neighborhood retail street. A large, community gathering plaza is envisioned at the intersection of Auahi and Cooke streets.

No new streets or changes to existing public roadways are proposed as part of the plan.

The 400,000-square-foot innovation center, made up of three five-story lab buildings, is planned for next to the medical school, with a seawater air-conditioning system. It is expected to generate more than 1,200 jobs.

The initial phase could break ground as early as 2010.

In an addendum, Kamehameha Schools said it would prefer if the city's planned Civic Center rail-transit station on both sides of Halekauwila Street was moved to just one side of Mother Waldron Park on Cooke Street.

This would increase ridership and convenience, according to Kamehameha Schools.

In approving the master plan, HCDA determines the building heights, density, open space, and other guidelines allowed for the development. Before breaking ground on any building, Kamehameha Schools still would have to go back to HCDA for a development permit.