The University of Hawaii Palamanui Campus has cleared a major hurdle, and work on the long awaited project will finally move forward, according to officials from the University of Hawaii Community Colleges. After facing issues with cost overruns and procurement, the bidding process was concluded this past Friday–without any challenges—and the University will proceed with finalizing the contract for construction of the community college campus for West Hawaii.
The Palamanui Campus will be the 11th permanent campus of the University of Hawaii system. The first phase of the project will include a culinary arts building and a health science and student services building.
Big Island legislators are working together to ensure that the needed additional funding for Phase 1 of the Palamanui Campus will be in this year’s State budget. Representative Nicole Lowen, who represents State House District 6 where the new campus will be located, sits on the House Finance Committee and will participate in upcoming conference committee budget negotiations with the Senate.
“The Palamanui Campus, which has been one of my top priorities this legislative session, is an essential addition to the West Hawaii Community,” said Rep. Lowen (Kailua-Kona, Holualoa, Kalaoa, Honokohau). “As a former teacher, I am personally aware of our district’s need to provide an opportunity for quality education close to home. Children who were my students when they were in preschool are now graduating high school, and many of them have had to leave West Hawaii to pursue their education, or have had to forgo post-secondary education altogether due to the lack of affordable option close to home. With the development of the Palamanui Campus, we will finally have opportunities in our own community, and these young adults will have a greater chance of succeeding in a setting where they can remain close to home and have the support of family and friends.
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