Expansion of Kukui’ula project requested

Kukui’ula Development Company Inc. is asking the state Land Use Commission for permission to develop an additional 246 acres of its 1,000-acre resort residential project along the coast at Koloa.

The state Land Use Commission is scheduled to take a field trip to Koloa to look over the additional 246 acres Kukui’ula is asking the LUC to reclassify from agricultural to urban use.

Members of the LUC are to meet at the Anne Knudsen Park on Maluhia Road for the site visit.

If Kukui’ula secures the reclassification of the land, the company would be able to accelerate the development of the project.

The project will create more urban development in south Kaua’i, but it is expected to strengthen Koloa and Po’ipu as one the prime residential and resort areas on Kaua’i.

Longtime south Kaua’i residents have voiced concerns in the past that traffic congestion has developed in South Kaua’i with more growth and that traffic congestion will only get worse if relief roads are not built as the development of the Kukui’ula project unfolds.

Kukui’ula Development is a company formed in part through a partnership of Alexander & Baldwin and DMB Associates Inc., which has headquarters in Arizona and an office on Kaua’i.

In the late 1980s, the LUC reclassified 219 acres of the 1,000-acre project from agricultural to urban use.

In May 1995, the LUC approved “incremental redistricting” for anther 783 acres, reclassifying the land from agricultural to urban use.

However, the LUC stipulated Kukui’ula could develop only 537 acres at one time and could develop the remaining 246 acres after meeting performance requirements, county officials said.

Related to the May 9 site visit by the LUC, Kukui’ula wants approval to develop the remaining 246 acres of the 783-acre parcel, the county said.

For the 1,000-acre project, Kukui’ula has proposed the construction of a small hotel, multi-and-single-family housing units, affordable housing units, a golf course, a 20-acre park and use of some land for commercial purposes.

Kukui’ula representatives have proposed reducing the number of multi-family and single-family housing units from about 3,000 to 1,500 units.

If approved, single family homes would be put on bigger and more expensive lots, according to the county.

Kukui’ula representatives also have proposed a visitor designation area classification for the project. If the designation is granted, housing units could be used as time share and vacation rentals.

Kukui’ula representatives have said they would like property owners who would not live full time at the resort to have such options.

Critics contend the vacation rentals have changed island neighborhoods, flooding areas with visitors and transients. Proponents of the concept of time share and vocational rentals say such units create jobs and help support the island’s economy.

Staff writer Lester Chang can be reached at 245-3681 (ext. 225) and mailto:lchang@pulitzer.net


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