Olowalu project includes 59 units
Peter Martin will seek to fast-track the plan
A new affordable housing proposal for undeveloped West Maui land is on the horizon, and landowner Peter Martin will be asking to fast-track the project early next year if all goes according to plan, the project manager said Wednesday.
Located mauka of Honoapiilani Highway in Olowalu, the Lihau’ula subdivision project calls for 59 units on nearly 30 acres of land — a mix of workforce and market-rate single-family homes.
Forty workforce homes on 10,000-square-foot lots would be designated for qualified residents earning between 80 to 140 percent of the area median income. Another 19 market-priced lots — nine on 10,000-square-foot lots and 10 on one-acre agriculture lots — would be included. Design plans, though not final, show three- and four-bedroom homes, each with two bathrooms.
The project will include a 0.69-acre park, paved interior roadway loop, individual wastewater systems and a private water system, according to a presentation by Kyle Ginoza, project manager.
According to the presentation, projected workforce home sales prices include:
• 12 homes at $486,220 for those earning 80 to 100 percent AMI ($67,040 to $83,800)
• One home at $507,300 for 100 to 120 percent AMI ($83,800 to $100,560)
• 19 homes at $583,395 for 100 to 120 percent AMI
• Two homes at $591,900 for 120 to 140 percent AMI ($100,560 to $117,320)
• Six homes at $680,685 for 120 to 140 percent AMI
On Wednesday, Ginoza highlighted the project’s location, saying residents could walk to Olowalu General Store and drive through an improved intersection with “storage lanes,” which allow drivers to pull into a lane and wait to turn without disrupting traffic flow.
“For us, we feel it’s a great location and an opportunity to provide local housing, affordable workforce housing for our community,” he said. “We are trying hard to provide that housing stock for our families.”
Ginoza added that the area is in the Urban Growth Boundary of the Maui Island Plan.
“It’s something that members of the community had envisioned as an area for urban development for housing, which is why we selected this site,” he said.
West Maui Council Member Tamara Paltin, however, said that if developed, the area would represent more sprawl.
“I know people like to be able to live far away from things but realistically where are they going to go to school, where are they going to work?” she said Wednesday. “We need to add on more housing projects, but if we do 100 there and 100 there, it will cost people in the long run in terms of traffic and infrastructure.”
She added that she is “not a fan of 201Hs in general” because “they don’t follow our planning guidelines.”
Under state law, council has 45 days from the 201H project submittal to make a decision on the application or it is automatically approved.
Earlier this year, the council shot down a pair of workforce and market rate housing projects in Launiupoko proposed by two different entities associated with Martin, after residents voiced concerns over access to water, fire risk and lack of walking and public transit options to schools and jobs.
Currently, Lihau’ula is in the community outreach phase, with meetings to be held this and next month, Ginoza said.
Two community meetings have been scheduled at Olowalu Plantation House, 810 Olowalu Village Road: One from 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesday and one from 10 a.m. to noon Dec. 29.
Last week, a neighborhood meeting of 14 people was held at Martin’s house, he said.
Ginoza last month presented the proposal to the council’s Affordable Housing Committee.
During testimony at the Nov. 6 committee meeting, Adeline Rodrigues, who said she was born in Olowalu 89 years ago, said the project would provide an opportunity for her children to move home.
“Can anybody here tell me you lived on that land that you were born on and still there?” she said. “Please, please say yes (to the project).”
Meanwhile, Clare Apana testified that she had concerns about whether additional homes should be built in that location.
“It seems like how come they always put the affordable housing on the junk land, you know,” she said. “And, so if you could vet that, I would so appreciate that.”
Ginoza said that depending on how the meetings go and once project officials feel they’ve been able to adequately address comments received, a date will be scheduled with the Affordable Housing Committee to apply for the 201H process, potentially by late January or early February.
Landowner Lihau’ula LLC, whose principal is Martin, would be the applicant for the 201H process, according to meeting documents.
For information on Lihau’ula, email email@example.com, call 871-8424 or visit www.lihauula.com.
* Kehaulani Cerizo can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.