KAILUA-KONA, Hawaii – Of the $28.3 million in project funds released by the state, more than $13 million will go toward improvements to Natural Energy Laboratory of Hawaii – or NELHA – on Hawaii Island.
On Friday, the office of Hawaii Governor Neil Abercrombie announced the release of the capital improvement project funds to be administered by the state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism.
A successful test-bed for applied research, demonstration, testing and evaluation, NELHA is a driver of innovation, economic development, and job creation on the Big Island and for our entire state. Investments in these and other facilities and programs will further opportunities to advance our energy sustainability, diversify our economy, and keep us on course toward long-term economic viability.”Governor Neil Abercrombie via media release, Jan. 24, 2014
Here is the breakdown for NELHA:
$9,694,000 – Natural Energy Laboratory of Hawaii (NELHA) Frontage Road and New Intersection Connections, Hawaii Island – Construction of a 0.8-mile frontage road and new connections to the Kaiminani Drive and Makako Bay Drive intersections on Queen Kaahumanu Highway
$2,323,000 – NELHA Seawater System Upgrades, Hawaii Island – Design and construction to provide a 28-inch warm water connector to the independent North and South systems, which currently transfer only cold water; upgrades will also create a backup system to transfer warm water in case of a catastrophic failure of the current warm water system
$1,000,000 (in addition to $3,000,000 in federal grant funds) – NELHA Alternative Energy and Biotechnology Incubator, Hawaii Island – Renovation of the administrative building; this project will increase NELHA’s utilization of 10,000 square feet by converting open space into leasable office space
The release also includes $7 million for statewide workforce and affordable housing projects under the Dwelling Unit Revolving Fund. The fund “is used for the acquisition of real property, primarily for the development and construction of residential properties, and interim and permanent loans to developers at below-market rates to offer incentives for workforce and affordable housing development across the state.”
As for the CIP projects on the other islands:
$3,000,000 – Foreign-Trade Zone (FTZ) Import-Export Step-Up Incubator, Mauka Renovation, Oahu – Renovation of the FTZ incubator; renovations will increase the FTZ No. 9’s utilization of the building by converting 30,000 square feet of open space into leasable office space, common conference rooms, and training areas; the current office space is being used at 100 percent capacity (an additional $3,000,000 in federal funds have been awarded and appropriated for the construction of this project through a competitive Economic Development Administration grant)
$2,200,000 – Foreign-Trade Zone Pier 2 Facility Roof Repairs, Oahu – Repairs to roof, gutters, gutter drains, skylight panels, and perimeter eaves, as well as waterproofing the parapet wall of the facility; repairs will eliminate continued water damage in tenant offices and merchandise storage areas, improve structural integrity of the building, and increase available lease space within the warehouse
$1,855,000 – Hawaii Community Development Authority (HCDA) Community Development Districts, Oahu – DBEDT operational costs for 19 permanent, project-funded staff positions for fiscal year 2014
$1,300,000 – Waiahole Water System Improvements, Oahu – Design improvements to the Waiahole Water System; the existing booster pump and key sections of the existing water main need to be upgraded to meet fire flow and Board of Water Supply requirementsState of Hawaii media release, Jan. 24, 2014