LEAD AGENCY: Hawai’i Public Housing Authority (HPHA), State of Hawai’i
FEDERAL AGENCY: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
RESPONSIBLE ENTITY: Governor of the State of Hawai’i
ACTION: Notice of Intent (NOI) to prepare a National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Mayor Wright Homes Redevelopment and Notice of Public Scoping Meeting
The State of Hawai’i, Hawai’i Public Housing Authority (HPHA), as project agency, is issuing this notice to advise the public of its intent to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969. The NEPA EIS will evaluate potential environmental, social, and economic impacts for the redevelopment of the existing Mayor Wright Homes public housing project in Honolulu, Hawai’i, into a mixed-use, mixed-income housing project. The NEPA EIS requirements implemented by the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) in 40 CFR Parts 1500-1508 are triggered by the request for funding through programs under the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) (24 CFR 58.37) and the up to 2,500 residential units proposed for the project.
The Proposed Action for the Mayor Wright Homes Redevelopment project is the redevelopment of the site to include a one-for-one replacement of the 364 existing public housing units (based on the number of bedrooms in existing units) as well as up to an additional 2,136 new residential units for a total of up to 2,500 residential rental units. It is estimated that about two-thirds of the residential units will be affordable housing (a combination of public housing, low-income, low-moderate income, and workforce housing units affordable to those earning up to 120 percent of the area median income) and the remaining one-third will be market-rate rentals. The Proposed Action will also include up to 80,000 SF of retail and commercial uses, structured parking, new internal roadways, a community center, and open space on the approximately 15-acre state-owned parcel currently occupied by the existing Mayor Wright Homes residences.
The anticipated federal funding sources include but are not limited to:
The United States Housing Act of 1937, Section 8 Project Based Vouchers or Project Based Rental Assistance,
The United States Housing Act of 1937, Section 9 ACC payments (Operating Fund) and Public Housing Capital Fund (including Capital Fund Financing Program, Choice Neighborhood Planning and Revitalization Grant, Section 18 Demolition/Disposition assistance),
Rental Assistance Demonstration ("RAD") Section 8 Project Based Vouchers or Project Based Rental Assistance (authorized in the Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act of 2012),
HUD FHA Insured 221 (d)(4) Loans,
Low Income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTC),
Community Development Block Grants (including Section 108 Loan Guarantee Program),
Housing Trust Funds (enacted in the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008), and
New Market Tax Credits
The project would redevelop 14.8451 acre state-owned parcel located on TMK (1) 1-7-029:003, which is roughly bounded by Liliha Street, Vineyard Boulevard, Pua Lane, and North King Street and located at 606 North Kukui Street in Honolulu, Hawai’i on the island of O’ahu in the City & County of Honolulu.
The conceptual master plan proposes a mix of low (four to six stories) and mid-rise (eight to nine stories) buildings fronting the streets with up to four towers, ranging from 260′ to 380′ in height. The low and mid-rise buildings would line the project site along the streets in order to respect the surrounding community and the towers would be set back from the streets with their longer faces oriented mauka-makai (mountain to ocean) to minimize the potential impact of distant mountain views from public view corridors.
The project embraces its location within a City & County of Honolulu Transit Oriented Development (TOD) zone and supports multi-modal transportation through its site design. The site also benefits from its proximity to three (3) rail stations as it will be located within a third of a mile of the future Iwilei Station and also roughly a half of a mile from the Chinatown and Kapalama Stations. New internal streets, designed as complete streets, will encourage walking and bicycling and ease access to bus routes and the future rail station. The street network is purposely designed without connections straight through the property to discourage speeding and cut-through traffic but allow for convenient access throughout the site. Traffic calming solutions will also be integrated in order to provide a safe and pleasant environment for pedestrians. Ground-floor retail and commercial uses will activate streetscapes. Sidewalks will be shaded by awnings or street trees to provide shelter from the sun and rain.
At the heart of the project is a new community park anchored by a community center and multi-purpose hale (building) where residents can gather for family parties and community events. Smaller open spaces, community gardens, and recreational decks are dispersed throughout the site creating a hierarchy of well-organized outdoor open spaces that bridge the interior and exterior elements and provide opportunities for future residents to enjoy the outdoors, grow their own food for better health and wellness, and recreate. Culturally significant plants and lei plants will also be considered in the landscape design of the project so the plantings can serve multiple purposes of being useful as well as providing shade, comfort and aesthetics.
Structured parking is proposed for the project in order to increase site efficiencies and will be wrapped by the lower- and mid-rise mixed-use buildings. This will help minimize views of the parking structure from the street and provide direct access to units wherever possible. The number of parking stalls constructed will be based on City & County of Honolulu standards and requirements for the TOD neighborhood, but they may be decoupled from non-public housing residential units in order to give future residents the option of having or not having a parking stall; given the site’s easy access to public transportation and proximity to job centers. This option could potentially reduce rents and make housing more affordable for non-public housing residents if they opt not to have parking.
The project alternatives to be discussed in the EIS include:
Alternative Density Studies (2,000-unit and 3,000-unit Alternatives and the Draft Downtown Neighborhood TOD Plan Alternative)
Alternative Street Alignments and Site Plan Layouts
Alternative Phasing Plans
Net-Zero Energy Alternative
The proposed redevelopment may involve the following actions and approvals: Chapter 343, Hawai’i Revised Statutes (HRS), Chapter 201H, HRS, Permit to Perform Work within a State Public Right of Way, National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System Permits, Noise Permits, Section 106 Review National Historic Preservation Act of 1966 (NHPA), Historic Site Review, Preliminary and final subdivision approval, Sewer Connection Permits, Master Development Agreement approval, other encroachment, easements, grading, demolition, construction, building permits and other Federal, State and local approvals for redevelopment of Mayor Wright Homes.
A public scoping meeting will be held on November 29, 2017 pursuant to 40 CFR 1501.7 and will build on previous community input received for the Proposed Action’s master plan development and at the start of the EIS process. This scoping meeting will focus on previous input that is being incorporated into the EIS and any additional topics that should be addressed for the upcoming submittal of the Draft EIS. Details regarding the time and place of the scoping meeting are as follows:
November 29, 2017 at 6:00 PM
Palama Settlement Dining Hall
810 N. Vineyard Boulevard
Honolulu, HI 96817
CONTACT INFO FOR THE PUBLIC SCOPING MEETING:
Emily Davids, 808-792-3752 or Emily.Davids@huntcompanies.com
PREVIOUS PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT:
Public involvement in the project scoping has been ongoing through the master plan process since early 2016. During that period, HPHA and the planning and development team consulted with current residents, the general public, and community stakeholders about the potential scope and impacts of the proposed project. A series of community and resident meetings were held to help develop the conceptual master plan for the project culminating in a weeklong design charrette in August 2016 that was held on-site at Mayor Wright Homes and open to the public. Meetings were conducted with the following community groups and individuals beginning in early 2016:
Neighborhood Boards (4 meetings that took place between April and October, 2016)
State Legislators (meetings with 4 legislators throughout April, 2016)
Councilmembers (meetings with 2 councilmembers that took place in April and August, 2016)
Mayor Wright Homes Resident Meetings (2 meetings took place May and July, 2016)
Public Community Meetings (4 meetings that took place in May, June, and July, 2016 as well as June, 2017)
Stakeholder Meetings and Interviews (11 meetings with different community representatives and organizations that took place from July through August, 2016)
Community Advisory Committee (3 meetings that took place in July and August, 2016 as well as June, 2017)
A State of Hawai’i (State) EIS Preparation Notice (EISPN) for the Proposed Action was prepared and published in the State Office of Environmental Quality Control (OEQC)’s The Environmental Notice on September 23, 2016, as required by State laws for environmental review, pre-consultation, and scoping (Chapter 343, Hawai’i Revised Statute). Subsequently, the State Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) was prepared and published in the September 8, 2017 edition of OEQC’s The Environmental Notice and the public comment period for the DEIS closed on October 23, 2017.
For further information regarding the HPHA’s Proposed Action contact:
Mr. Hakim Ouansafi, Executive Director
Hawai’i Public Housing Authority
State of Hawai’i
1002 North School Street
Honolulu, Hawai’i 96817
Phone: (808) 832-4682
Fax (808) 832-4679
Information on ADA accessibility and accommodations for translators and sign language interpreters are available upon request ten (10) days prior to the meeting date. Please contact Emily Davids at 808-792-3752 or Emily.Davids@huntcompanies.com.