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Blessing ceremony held at Lima Ola housing development on Kaua‘i

‘ELE‘ELE — A blessing ceremony was held on Tuesday, May 30, 2023, for a long-anticipated, $50.3 million affordable housing project that will one day be home for dozens of families on Kaua‘i.

The County Housing Agency and developer Ahe Group hosted the ceremony at the site of the Lima Ola affordable housing subdivision, which sits in proximity to the South Shore coastline.

“Just a few weeks ago, we were out here commemorating the start of construction for our supportive housing portion of Lima Ola. And here we are again, about to begin construction for 85 additional housing units,” said Mayor Derek S.K. Kawakami in a statement.

“We continue to add to our housing inventory through the hard work of many. Mahalo to our housing agency staff, the Ahe Group, our congressional partners, Kaua‘i County Countil and state legislators, our Hanapepe-‘Ele‘ele community and everyone who had a hand in getting Lima Ola, which encompasses many phases of housing development, off the ground.”

A total of 85 apartments will be built at the site for working families and seniors. There will be 45 multi-family units and 40 senior housing units.

The 45-unit, multi-family project will consist of 36 two-bedroom units, five one-bedroom units and four three-bedroom units. The 40-unit senior component will be one-bedroom units.

The project will also include three community gardens, exercise equipment sprinkled through common areas, laundry facilities and easy access to The Kaua‘i Bus.

Funding for the project came from multiple sources — federal housing money, low-income
housing credits, congressional earmarks and private activity bonds.

The blessing ceremony, which was officiated by Kahu Sean Chun, was attended by a number of people, including county Managing Director Michael Dahilig, Dana Hazelton (Gov. Josh Greens’s Kaua‘i liaison) and Mia Ako (the Kaua‘i representative of U.S. Rep. Jill Tokuda).

The project, which is estimated to be complete in 2024, is spearheaded by Ahe Group President and CEO Makani Maeva. Maeva is also overseeing the project under a long-term ground lease agreement.

“Long-term planning has brought this project to reality. This blessing is the beginning of another successful project, and we hope to provide many more affordable housing units for Kaua‘i,” said Maeva in a statement.

On Tuesday, May 9, 2023, a blessing was held at the site for the supportive housing component of the project.

That model is intended to provide low-cost rental housing to Kaua‘i residents experiencing homelessness or who are at imminent risk of becoming homeless.

Under this model, tenants receive on-site social services to assist them in getting back on their feet and prepare them to move to more permanent housing. While tenancy in supportive housing is not intended to be permanent, it also is not strictly time limited, as are traditional, transitional housing models.

A total of 24 units — studio and one-bedroom — will be built, with square footage ranging from 240 to 400 square feet. The project will also include a community building that will include offices, a reception area and laundry facilities.

A combination of American Rescue Plan Act and State and Local Recovery Funds, Home-American Rescue Plan funds, and county housing development funds were utilized for the design and build of this project. The total cost of the Lima Ola Supportive Housing Project is $4.37 million.

Shioi Construction is the contractor for this project, which is anticipated to complete during the first quarter of 2024.


Wyatt Haupt Jr., editor, can be reached at 808-245-0457 or
Source: The Garden Island

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