(BIVN) – An expansion of the Arts and Sciences Center in Pāhoa to include a new Community Learning Center is depicted in a Final Environmental Assessment published on July 23.
The Final EA, accepted by the Hawai‘i County Planning Department with a Finding of No Significant Impact, details the planned construction of six buildings over four phases, “to provide easily accessible skills training, facilities, and resources to the public to support Puna’s economy and help diversify the workforce.”
The Main Campus sits on the northeast corner of the State Highway 130 and Post Office Road intersection. The planned Community Learning Center will operate separately from the Hawaiʻi Academy of Arts and Sciences Public Charter School, the document states.
According to the document, the proposed expansion includes the construction of six (6) main buildings:
- Building A: Gateway/Community Workforce Development/Technology Center
- Building B: Industrial and Skilled Trades Development Center
- Building C: Agricultural Center
- Building D: Event Center/Auditorium and Atrium
- Building E: Vocational School/Auditorium
- Building F: Maintenance/Repair Shop
From the Final EA:
In addition to these buildings, the grounds will also be designed for community focused agriculture, aquaponics and aquaculture, outdoor workshop spaces, outdoor learning areas, treatment ponds and water storage, stream ecology, ethnobotanical gardens, an amphitheater, community athletic and outdoor activity fields, walking paths, a greenhouse, composting and green waste areas, parking lots and drop off locations. The proposed multi-functioning gathering spaces will be designed to act as shelter during times of natural disasters.
The Final EA says the “total project construction costs are roughly $60 million, with the first phase valuated at approximately $20 million. Construction is planned to commence upon completion of permitting and design, with full buildout estimated by 2031.”