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Outline of parcels

The University of Hawaiʻi is soliciting proposals from qualified developers interested in developing land adjacent to UH West Oʻahu for a private film studio and other mixed-use/commercial uses.

The property consists of approximately 34 acres of land adjacent to the new Keoneʻae rail station, bus transit and park-and-ride facilities. The project site is bound by Farrington Highway to the north and Kualakaʻi Parkway to the east. The UH West Oʻahu campus lies to the south, and the Hawaiʻi Tokai International College campus is to the west.

The project will be developed pursuant to a development agreement and long-term ground lease to be negotiated between UH and the selected developer, subject to review and final action by the UH Board of Regents. UH expects the selected developer to design, build, finance, operate, manage and maintain the project for the life of the long-term lease at little or no cost to the university. Ownership would revert back to UH when the ground lease expires.

“This is an example of the university developing a project that will, first and foremost, bolster enhancements on university property by adding attraction to our campus for students and academic programs. This should also provide a financial benefit for UH and position UH as a partner in addressing broader statewide issues, such as contributing to a diversified economy and supporting workforce housing,” said UH Vice President for Budget and Finance and CFO Kalbert Young.

The deadline for submissions is October 13, 2023, and the developer is scheduled to be announced December 15, 2023.

Transit-oriented development

Field and roads
View looking southwest to the Property from intersection of Kualakaʻi Parkway/Farrington Highway

The invitation to submit proposals (ISP) reads, “The University is making the Property available to address a State level initiative to support the State’s film industry. The University will accept nominal or minimal lease rent if paired with an articulated benefit for academic programs of the University, direct industry support for the State, and/or enhancements to the broader Hawaiʻi community.”

The ISP also sets forth the following objectives for the project:

  1. A lessee that will have a physical presence on property.
  2. A lessee that is prepared and able to manage and secure the property to eliminate the university’s need to further maintain the property, reducing its liability, and that generates revenue to support UH’s mission.
  3. A lessee that will develop the property to advance the state and county objectives for the transit-oriented development around the Keoneʻae Transit Station, while supporting UH’s vision of a vibrant university village.
  4. A lessee that will partner and collaborate with UH programs and departments including, but not limited to, the UH West Oʻahu Academy for Creative Media.
  5. A lessee that will work with the community through a community outreach program for the development of this project.

The complete set of solicitation documents is posted on UH’s Hawaiʻi electronic procurement system. Interested parties should go there to complete registration as a UH vendor.

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