Construction on a new student housing facility on the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa campus is expected to begin in September 2023 after the UH Board of Regents (BOR) approved today (April 20, 2023) an amended agreement with the private developer. The approximately $156.9 million facility on Dole Street across from Frear Hall is expected to be completed in time for the fall 2025 semester.
The facility will consist of two buildings (18 stories and 12 stories) and include 316 units with 558 beds (studios, two-, three- and four-bedroom units), a childcare facility, retail/café space, bike storage, study rooms, laundry facility, mail and package room, outdoor amenity decks and on-site management.
“This is a priority project for UH as it will provide our students with new and additional housing opportunities right here on campus,” said UH Vice President of Administration Jan Gouveia. “This new student housing facility will have a long-lasting impact on our campus community as it addresses multiple needs including providing more quality and affordable housing options, on-campus childcare and additional retail services.”
The privately financed project is a public-private partnership (P3) with Greystar Real Estate Partners, which UH officially partnered with in June 2020. UH and Greystar have assembled a team that includes a number of private, non-profit, and commercial partners to execute on this housing facility project. Greystar has completed the facility design, final environmental assessment and obtained necessary discretionary approvals to move forward with the project. The project will be privately owned, operated and maintained by the Collegiate Housing Foundation, a non-profit student housing entity that operates student housing on other university and college campuses throughout the United States. Financing for the project will be underwritten by Raymond James, and is anticipated to be obtained in July 2023.
This is the second UH P3 student housing project on the Mānoa campus as the university continues to find alternatives to state funding to improve facilities and the student experience. The Residences for Innovative Student Entrepreneurs, an innovation and entrepreneurship center/student housing facility on the corner of University Avenue and Metcalf Street, is scheduled to open in fall 2023 and will house about 370 students.
“This is just the latest example of the UH’s goal of developing alternative revenue streams to affordably build modern educational facilities without raising tuition and being overly reliant on taxpayers,” said UH Vice President for Budget and Finance and CFO Kalbert Young.
The BOR agreed to the administration’s recommendation to update the pre-closing agreement and ground lease with Greystar as higher interest rates over the last few years have increased costs. UH has agreed to provide:
- $2 million in rent abatement each year to keep the rental rates affordable (average bed rate of $1,565 a month).
- An additional $2.96 million, for a total of $8 million, for pre-development and pre-construction work.
- A property lease for a term to end with the bond repayment, approximately 45 to 50 years.
New campus childcare facility
The project will receive an additional $10 million from the Hawaiʻi State School Facilities Authority (SFA) for the childcare facility, which will be operated by UH Mānoa Children’s Center. The Children’s Center currently operates out of Castle Memorial Hall and will relocate when the new facility is operational.
The new childcare facility will include eight classrooms and serve about 128 students. SFA’s contribution is in line with its mission to help the state meet its goal of expanding access to pre-kindergarten to eligible children of the Hawaiʻi.
LEED certified construction and facility
The project is being designed to meet Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Silver Certification to help the 10-campus system reach its goal of net-zero energy by 2035. The developer is committed to reducing the carbon footprint of the project during construction and when it is operational.