(BIVN) – Lease negotiations for a new affordable housing project in South Kohala got the go-ahead from the Hawaiʻi County Council this week.
After a short discussion on Wednesday, councilmemebers approved Resolution 303-23, authorizing the Director of Finance to negotiate a 68-year lease with Pacific Housing Assistance Corporation/Kamakoa Nui Limited Partnership to develop the 140-unit Nā Hale Mākoa workforce rental housing community in Waikoloa Village.
“The Office of Housing and Community Development is pleased to see Nā Hale Mākoa reach this milestone and eagerly awaits the blessing and turning of the earth to mark the official start of construction of these much-needed affordable housing units,” said Housing Administrator Susan Kunz.
From the Hawaiʻi County Office of Housing and Community Development:
Nā Hale Mākoa will be located on 10.32 acres of County-owned land on the northern end of Waikoloa Village, within the existing Kamakoa Nui subdivision. The parcel is bounded by Iwikuamoʻo Drive, Kamakoa Drive and Paniolo Avenue and the first phase of Kamakoa Nui.
Construction is anticipated to get underway with a groundbreaking followed by commencement of site work in spring 2024. Nā Hale Mākoa expects to begin welcoming families in summer 2025.
Nā Hale Mākoa will provide affordable rental housing opportunities for households earning up to 140% of the Area Median Income (AMI). Of the 140 units, 109 are reserved for households earning no more than 60% AMI with the remaining units targeting households earning no more than 140% AMI.
The $82.3 million project is funded by the Hula Mae Multi-Family Bond Program, Low-Income Housing Tax Credit Program, Rental Housing Revolving Fund Program, County of Hawaiʻi Affordable Housing Production Program and 30 Project-Based Vouchers awarded by the Office of Housing and Community Development.
The need for affordable housing on Hawai’i Island is dire, and increasing the availability and accessibility of affordable housing remains a top priority for Mayor Mitch Roth’s administration. According to the 2019 Hawai’i Housing Planning Study, the County of Hawai’i needed to add 10,796 affordable housing units by 2025 to meet the community’s needs.
Since taking office in late 2020, Mayor Mitch Roth’s administration through the Office of Housing and Community Development has worked closely with its partner developers to increase the number of units in the affordable housing pipeline from about 1,200 units to over 6,600 units.
The Office of Housing and Community Development anticipates the completion of 159 units in 2023 followed by an additional 217 units in 2024.
In 2024, construction is expected to commence on about 650 units that will be completed in 2025 and 2026. That’s in addition to the construction of a loop road that will open development of over 640 units at Kamakoa Nui in Waikoloa Village.