New homes factor into economic projections


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While the Honolulu real estate market has been on an upswing through the summer months, the latest report from UH economists indicates the market had an uneven start to the year.

However, the statewide report by the University of Hawaii Economic Research Organization, or UHERO, points to upcoming residential development as a factor in the construction industry’s continuing expansion. On Oahu, construction is poised to overtake tourism as the island’s lead economic engine.

Here’s a look at where some of the proposed residential projects stand:

  • Castle & Cooke’s Koa Ridge project in Central Oahu received approval from the Honolulu Planning Commission to rezone agricultural land for urban development, paving the way for the first phase of the planned community. If the City Council approves the project, construction could begin early next year and the first homes could be ready by mid-2015.
  • D.R. Horton is petitioning the Planning Commission to rezone land in West Oahu for its Hoopili development. If things go smoothly, construction for the planned community could begin in 2015.
  • Howard Hughes Corp. has plans for Kaakako that include 22 towers, as well as continued renovation of the Ossipoff-designed IBM building. The first phase for the towers would add two market-rate residential buildings and one affordable development to the growing Kakaako neighborhood.
  • As part of Kamehameha Schools’ “Our Kakaako” master plan for seven residential towers and 300,000 square feet of commercial space, developer Stanford-Carr has announced a mixed-use development on South Street. The UHERO report notes that several of the towers in the master plan would breach existing height limits.

The UHERO state forecast “Expansion to strengthen despite Washington worries” is available on the organization’s website at uhero.hawaii.edu.

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