Hawaii agency rejects plans to develop key Kewalo Basin Harbor lot

The Hawaii Community Development Authority is scheduled to hear plans from The Howard

The Hawaii Community Development Authority is scheduled to hear plans from The Howard

The Hawaii Community Development Authority rejected Wednesday two developers’ plans to develop a key portion of the lands surrounding Kewalo Basin Harbor in the Honolulu neighborhood of Kakaako, but approved The Howard Hughes Corp.’s plans for the two other lots.

John Whalen, chairman of the HCDA board, said that the lot that both developers had plans for— the former McWayne Marine Supply site — is a key piece out of all of the three lots in question.

“The board has lots of concern with significant commercial development around the harbor and how it fits in with the central function of Kakaako as a harbor and accessibility for public uses,” he said. “Leasing public lands is a serious issue and commitment, particularly in public lands where there is adjacent public use. We understand the need to raise revenue for the state, but there are other ways we can do that and keep public spaces [intact].”

Whalen also had concerns that the current board did not issue the original request for proposals for the development of the three sites surrounding the harbor.

The Texas-based developer, The Howard Hughes Corp., had plans for all three parcels surrounding the harbor — the former McWayne Marine Supply site, the charter boat building site and the former National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration lot.

Kewalo Waterfront Partners, which includes Japanese-based firms Good Luck International Corp. and Hinamari Hawaii Inc., had plans to renovate four buildings totaling 45,000 square feet at the former McWayne Marine Supply site. Although Kewalo Waterfront Partners only submitted a plan for this site, it did plan to do small renovations at the other two lots.

Its original plan that mostly remains the same for the former McWayne Marine Supply site, which is between Ala Moana Beach Park and Kewalo Basin Harbor, includes a permanent indoor farmer’s market, food halls, a chef’s club, a signature cafe, a beachside cafe, a multi-use venue that could host weddings, a live music venue, a sunset lounge, a public viewing dock, a lei stand, a community garden, a water feature and a parking structure.

Kewalo Waterfront Partners, in its updated plan, broke the buildings down into five parcels, included a convenience store, and refined the project’s architecture. Building heights also were lowered and more ground level parking was added.

The Kewalo Waterfront Partners’ project, over a 30-year span, would’ve brought in more than $100 million in lease revenue. It also would’ve been responsible for $1 million in off-site infrastructure improvements, create 800 jobs and 250 parking stalls.

Howard Hughes, whose 60-acre Ward Village master-planned community is across the street and which manages the harbor, significantly scaled down its plans, including doing more landscape improvements and upgrades to the lot between Ala Moana Park and Kewalo Basin Harbor.

At the charter boat building lot, the developer plans to add grab-and-go vendors that will provide items such as bottled water, sunscreen, slippers and towels, as well as a take-out lunch place.

The HCDA voted 6-2 to approve Howard Hughes’ plan for this lot.

In the former NOAA lot, the developer plans to pay homage to the “ice house” that was once located at the site and was used to supply ice to harbor-based fishing boats. The Kewalo Ice House would be transformed to include indoor-outdoor courtyards, bringing people together with shared interests in art, food, music and the ocean.

The state agency voted 5-3 to approve the developer’s plan for this lot.

In total, Howard Hughes lowered its project cost for improvements to the existing buildings and open spaces to $6 million.

Duane Shimogawa
Reporter
Pacific Business News

Hawaii agency delays decision on redevelopment of Kewalo Basin Harbor lands

Howard Hughes Corp. to start work this fall on Kewalo Basin Harbor redevelopment in Honolulu

Howard Hughes Corp. to start work this fall on Kewalo Basin Harbor redevelopment in Honolulu

The Hawaii Community Development Authority has delayed making a decision on two separate proposals from two developers on renovations to the lands surrounding Kewalo Basin Harbor in the Honolulu neighborhood of Kakaako.

At its regular meeting on Wednesday, which lasted until nearly 6 p.m., the state agency that regulates development in the area heard once again from The Howard Hughes Corp. (NYSE: HHC) and Kewalo Waterfront Partners, a partnership between two Japanese firms, and planned to make decision.

But after heading into executive session, John Whalen, chairman of the HCDA board, said that the board needed more time to consider the two plans, and noted that some board members were not present to vote.

The board plans to make a decision on what to do with the three parcels surrounding Kewalo Basin Harbor at its meeting on Dec. 2.

The Howard Hughes Corp. has plans for all three parcels surrounding the harbor — the former McWayne Marine Supply site, the charter boat building site and the former National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration lot.

Kewalo Waterfront Partners, which includes Good Luck International Corp. and Hinamari Hawaii Inc., has plans to renovate four buildings totaling 45,000 square feet at the former McWayne Marine Supply site. Although Kewalo Waterfront Partners only submitted a plan for this site, it does plan to do small renovations at the other two lots.

Its original plan that mostly remains the same for the former McWayne Marine Supply site, which is between Ala Moana Beach Park and Kewalo Basin Harbor, includes a permanent indoor farmer’s market, food halls, a chef’s club, a signature cafe, a beachside cafe, a multi-use venue that could host weddings, a live music venue, a sunset lounge, a public viewing dock, a lei stand, a community garden, a water feature and a parking structure.

Kewalo Waterfront Partners, in its updated plan, broke the buildings down into five parcels, included a convenience store and refined the project’s architecture. Building heights also were lowered and more ground level parking was added.

Ron Iwami, president of the community group Friends of Kewalos, spoke in opposition of Kewalo Waterfront Partners’ plan mainly because it is too dense. He said he prefers The Howard Hughes Corp.’s plan because it is less dense and said that the developer has been listening to his group from the start.

The Kewalo Waterfront Partners’ project, over a 30-year span, would bring in more than $100 million in lease revenue, be responsible for $1 million in off-site infrastructure improvements, create 800 jobs and 250 parking stalls.

Howard Hughes, whose 60-acre Ward Village master-planned community is across the street and which manages the harbor, significantly scaled down its plans, including doing more landscape improvements and upgrades to the lot between Ala Moana Park and Kewalo Basin Harbor.

At the charter boat building lot, the developer plans to add grab-and-go vendors that will provide items such as bottled water, sunscreen, slippers and towels, as well as a take-out lunch place.

In former NOAA lot, the developer plans to pay homage to the “ice house” that was once located at the site and was used to supply ice to harbor-based fishing boats. The Kewalo Ice House would be transformed to include indoor-outdoor courtyards, bringing people together with shared interests in art, food, music and the ocean.

In total, Howard Hughes lowered its project cost for improvements to the existing buildings and open spaces to $6 million, according to Race Randle, vice president of development for the Texas developer.

Randle said the developer would like to renovate all three lots, and that whatever happens, the projects need to be holistically planned and implemented at one time because the lots surround a working harbor with many small businesses that need to be kept in mind as improvements are made to the surrounding lands.

Dean Okimoto, owner of Nalo Farms in Windward Oahu, opposesthe Texas developer’s plan for the Kewalo Basin Harbor lands and is in favor of the Kewalo Waterfront Partners’ project because it supports local farmers.

He raised concerns about The Howard Hughes Corp. already owning and operating the 60-acre Ward Village across the street, and that the developer would only be monopolizing the area even more if its proposals are chosen.

Duane Shimogawa
Reporter
Pacific Business News

Howard Hughes, Japanese developers to present plans for Honolulu’s Kewalo Basin Harbor next week

The Hawaii Community Development Authority is scheduled to hear plans from The Howard

The Hawaii Community Development Authority is scheduled to hear plans from The Howard

The Howard Hughes Corp. and Kewalo Waterfront Partners Inc., a partnership between two Japanese firms, are expected to unveil two separate commercial development plans next week for the land surrounding Honolulu’s Kewalo Basin Harbor, an executive with the Hawaii Community Development Authority confirmed to PBN.

The state agency overseeing development in the Kakaako area, as part of its July 9 meeting, is scheduled to hear from the two developers regarding their proposals for the small boat harbor, which are likely to include waterfront retail, restaurants and a live entertainment venue.

The three parcels aimed for development include the former McWayne Marine Supply site, the charter boat building site and the former National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration lot.

The HCDA plans to make a decision on which proposal to choose on Aug. 5, Aedward Los Banos, the agency’s chief operating officer, told PBN.

However, he noted that the Aug. 5 decision-making hearing may be pushed back to the agency’s September meeting.

Kewalo Waterfront Partners, which includes Good Luck International Corp. and Hinamari Hawaii Inc., has plans to renovate four buildings totaling 45,000 square feet at the former McWayne Marine Supply site.

Plans for the site include retail stores and small restaurants, as well as a live entertainment venue, a bar, a cafe, office space, a multipurpose hall and a 250-stall parking garage, according to the project’s draft environmental assessment.

The Howard Hughes Corp. (NYSE: HHC), which has development rights for a total of 22 high-rise condominiums across the street and took control of the Kewalo Basin Harbor in September, plans to submit a proposal for all three parcels.

The Texas-based developer, through its senior director of development, Race Randle, has said that its plans for the harbor could include a restaurant that serves fresh fish caught from the commercial boats based at the harbor.

Other ideas presented at community meetings earlier this year included developing an oceanfront community center on the makai, or ocean, end of the harbor, which sits directly across from the developer’s 60-acre Ward Village master-planned community.

In the meantime, Japan-based Bellavita Inc. has scrapped its plans to develop a 6,000-square-foot Italian restaurant called Napule in the Kewalo Basin Harbor area, Los Banos told PBN.

He pointed out that the HCDA board may end up choosing Howard Hughes’ or Kewalo Waterfront Partners’ plan, or just the Texas-based developer’s proposal for all three sites.

The board also may end up choosing none of the proposals.

Duane Shimogawa
Pacific Business News

Kewalo Basin Harbor Honoring Its Past, Looking Towards the Future

Looking Forward February – Gateway Approved

Ward003Dreams are merely plans, blueprints, aspirations until that moment when they receive validation. Even the best-made plans can be waylaid by things large and small. But on November 25, 2014 Ward Village got the confirmation that its second-phase plans for its state-of-the-art master-planned neighborhood will become a reality. On this day, the Gateway proposal, which will feature 236 residences and 200,000 square feet of retail in two mixed-use towers abutting a one-acre green space stretching to Kewalo Basin Harbor, was approved by the Hawaii Community Development Authority.

Designed by Richard Meier & Partners, an architecture firm that excels in everything from single-family homes along the ocean to landmark civic spaces such as the Getty Center in Los Angeles, Gateway is bringing a whole new level of architecture to the South Shore of Oahu in collaboration with executive architect, Architects Hawaii, and a team of local consultants. One tower will jut like a blade into the skyline; its partner, a shimmering cylindrical building, will reflect the location’s transition from the downtown grid to Waikiki. Between the two, a green space will flow with water, walkways, and native plants, acting as a gathering place for the community. Together, Gateway—which will feature a variety of residences, from two-story villas to sprawling penthouses—will be the welcoming point and landmark of Ward Village.

Also part of this second phase approved by HCDA is a flagship 50,000 square-foot Whole Foods and additional retail space. Phase two will bring significant economic growth, green space, and amenities to the community that works, plays, and soon lives in Ward Village.When partygoers weren’t spellbound by artists, musicians, and hula dancers, or wrapped up in conversation, they hit the buffet. Guests dined on a sumptuous array of island favorites, including a poke and oyster bar from Oahu’s Poke Stop; cuisine inspired by traditional luau fare from Hale Aina Catering; and delicate tropical desserts from MW Restaurant.

The day, from bright and early at 8 a.m. until the sun set and the last of the event-goers headed home, was a true celebration of the story of Anaha, and the traditions that shape our unique island home.

Ward002

Honolulu’s Kewalo Basin Harbor revamp could include fresh fish restaurant, developer says

The Kewalo Basin Harbor conceptual plan

The Kewalo Basin Harbor conceptual plan

The Howard Hughes Corp.’s redevelopment of Honolulu’s Kewalo Basin Harbor could include a restaurant that serves fresh fish caught from the commercial boats based at the harbor, an executive from the Texas-based developer told PBN.

Other ideas presented at a community meeting last week included developing an oceanfront community center on the makai, or ocean, end of the harbor, which sits directly across from the developer’s 60-acre Ward Village master-planned community.

The ideas included creating a diverse, working harbor that supports the businesses that operate within and around it, supporting an urban fishing village in the heart of Honolulu and making the harbor an ocean recreation destination.

Race Randle, senior director of development for The Howard Hughes Corp. (NYSE: HHC), told PBN that it has heard from the public and boaters, especially, that it needs a place to get fresh fish.

“Right now, Kewalo brings in fresh fish every day, yet there’s no place to get it,” he said. “Ideas we presented had village-scale commercial uses — lower height, lower density — instead of large structures.”

Last Friday, the developer held its second community meeting with Kewalo park users, fishermen, tour operators, neighborhood board members and others to receive input on its conceptual plans for Kewalo Basin Harbor.

The meeting, which hosted about 100 people, followed the first one held in November, which also included about 100 individuals.

“Once we get all the feedback and make sure it’s aligned with the community’s goals, we will finalize our plans,” Randle said. “It needs to be a major connector from [Kakaako Mauka] to the waterfront. It needs to have unique character and needs to be a unique beach experience.”

The many ocean-related businesses at the harbor will be included in the redevelopment plans and won’t be chased away, Randle said.

“There are lots of small businesses in the area [and] it’s a big focus of ours to look at the harbor holistically,” he said. “Everything we are doing right is focusing on the success of those small businesses. We are already kicking off marketing efforts to get people to connect with those businesses to make it easier for people to do those activities, [including] creating a website.”

For Greg Longnecker, owner of eight boats at the harbor that provide recreational activities such as Xtreme Parasail and Hawaii Pirate Ship, the developer’s involvement in the redevelopment is long overdue.

“I moved here in 1983, so I remember the McWayne Marine era when we had more boats in the harbor than today,” he told PBN. “That’s the focal point of the city. We don’t even have a focal point. Everywhere you go, the focal point of the city is always the harbor.”

Longnecker noted that Kewalo Basin Harbor should be the gateway to the city and that The Howard Hughes Corp. sees that vision and wants it.

“Finally, we have someone with a vision for the harbor,” he said. “It has been forgotten.”

Longnecker also said he is not concerned at all about slip rents going up or about megayachts moving into the area.

“This is not a megayacht destination because it’s too rough,” he said. “Rate schedules are in the rules. Any time you can make the harbor more crowded, it brings in more business for businesses like mine.”

Longnecker said he would like to see at least 10 restaurants at the harbor.

Randle declined to specify what type of investment would be going into the land part of the redevelopment, although the developer has been previously noted that a $20 million investment would go into renovating the harbor itself, including the boat slips and other infrastructure.

He said that Howard Hughes is close to selecting a design/build team to do the work on this part of the project. The team would proceed with finalizing construction design and getting that part under construction. Permits for this work have been approved.

“The next step is refining the designs for improvements that will achieve those goals,” Randle said. “We will have public engagement to share those plans. We will take this input, and once we kick of design, we can schedule the next meeting.”

If all goes as planned, it is the developer’s hope to get things going sometime this year.

The Howard Hughes Corp., which has development rights for a total of 22 high-rise condominiums across the street, took control of the Kewalo Basin Harbor in September.

It secured the lease for the harbor for up to 45 years in a public-private partnership aimed at revitalizing the small commercial boat harbor, which currently has 144 boat slips in various states of disrepair.

Duane Shimogawa Reporter – Pacific Business News

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