The County of Hawai‘i today announced that it will soon begin sales of homes in the Kamakoa Nui workforce housing community in Waikoloa.
In a related announcement, the County will extend Paniolo Avenue from Waikoloa Elementary School to the community and the new Kamakoa Nui Park. The extension will provide a primary route to the park, which will provide ballfields and a skate park to all residents of Waikoloa.
The Office of Housing and Community Development (OHCD) will begin offering new fee-simple homes to qualified buyers at price points between $235,000 and $350,000. There are no additional costs to ownership such as homeowner’s association dues or community facilities charges. OHCD plans to ask for bids on the first three phases of the project — about 20 homes — by December 2012.
“We’ve had challenges along the way, including a lawsuit that we had to deal with,” said Steve Arnett, Administrator of the County’s Office of Housing and Community Development. “We are so excited about the possibility of now making this an addition to the Waikoloa Village community.”
Ongoing litigation between the County of Hawaii and Unidev LLC, the original developer of Kamakoa Nui, had clouded the title to the property. Although the lawsuits are ongoing, the County of Hawai‘i was informed Monday that title to the property was cleared. This development gave the County the green light to offer homes in Kamakoa Nui for sale.
Those who participated in a 2007 lottery to determine placing on the offering list are being contacted and will have first choice at purchasing a home in Kamakoa Nui. Depending on demand, remaining homes will be offered through another lottery. Those who are able to purchase should be able to move into their homes by next summer.
“It’s exciting! I’m a teacher here at Waikoloa, and it’s exciting to have the possibility of owning a home here in the Village where I teach,” said Larry Denis, a Waikoloa Elementary School teacher who was at today’s announcement and walk-through. “I’m excited to look at the options.”
Homes at Kamakoa Nui are being offered to resident families with household incomes of no more than 140 percent of the area median income. For a family of four, that comes out to $97,440. Additionally, Habitat For Humanity will purchase four lots at Kamakoa Nui. This will allow families with even lower average monthly incomes to be able to afford homes.
“Families will have an opportunity to build equity for their families, for their future,” said Mayor Billy Kenoi. “It becomes a wiser investment for all of us, and more importantly, it’s an investment in our children and their future.”
Mayor Kenoi also on Thursday announced that the $3 million first phase of the extension of Paniolo Avenue is expected to be out to bid in December and could be completed as early as the first quarter of 2014. The extension of Paniolo Avenue, from the traffic light near Waikoloa Elementary School to Kamakoa Nui, will create the primary entrance to the community and the park, lessening the impact to those living on Iwikuamo‘o Drive.
“We’re building the road because the community needs it. Although the obligation to construct the road rests with others, we cannot wait for them to resolve who will build it,” said Mayor Kenoi. “So we will build it.”
Timeline of Kamakoa Nui:
- 2005 – Kamakoa Vistas Workforce Housing project awarded to Unidev LLC of Bethesda, Md. Unidev contracts with the County of Hawai’i’s Office of Housing & Community Development to build 1,200 affordable units, which will be offered leasehold between $350,000 and $475,000, not including monthly $100 association dues and $450 in Community Facilities District fees.
- 2006 – Unidev secures $6 million in temporary financing from the National Electricians Benefit Fund (NEBF). Unidev partners with Citicorp to finance the entire project.
- 2007 – County pays off NEBF loan.
- 2007 – County breaks ground for the project on Dec. 29.
- 2008 – Citicorp drops out of project during the financial crisis.
- 2008 – County Council approves $40 million bond float for Kamakoa.
- 2008 – Waikoloa Workforce Housing LLC established by the county.
- 2008 – Isemoto Contracting Co. is the low bidder on backbone infrastructure at just under $28 million.
- 2008 – Unidev does not respond to county, WWH or vendors.
- 2009 – Under a new administration, County stops payments and sues Unidev citing false and fraudulent claims. County closes WWH.
- 2010 – OHCD revises business model under the newly branded name of Kamakoa Nui. Price points are now $235,000 to $350,000 for new, fee-simple new homes with no additional fees.
- 2011 – Site work completed by Isemoto.
- 2011 – Coastal Construction Co. submits low bid for model homes, which are completed on time and on budget.
- 2012 – The model homes are furnished by Trans Pacific Interior Design. Aldridge and Associates hired as real estate broker.
- 2012 – County clears title and announces that sales of homes at Kamakoa Nui are about to begin. County also announces it will extend Paniolo Avenue from the Waikoloa Elementary School to the new Kamakoa Nui Park.
Filed under: Announcements, Big Island, Community, Economy, Hawaii, Kohala, Something New? Tagged: | County of Hawai, Kamakakoa Nui Housing, Mayor Kenoi, Office of Housing & Community Development, Waikoloa