Maui News

Final EA published for Honokōwai Master Plan

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The Department of Hawaiian Home Lands has published its final Environmental Assessment with a Finding of No Significant Impact for the Honokōwai Homestead Community Master Plan.

The proposed master plan development, as outlined in the draft EA, seeks to create up to 356 single-family residential homesteads, 573 new multi-family Residential units, and 252 Subsistence Agriculture homestead lots on approximately 454 acres.

Other planned complementary land uses include up to 14 acres for supplemental homestead agriculture, 71 acres for community use, and 146 acres held for conservation. Approximately 16 acres are proposed for light industrial activities to provide a buffer between the existing County sewer treatment facility and the new homestead community.

DHHL will now begin the engineering design phase of the project which will include boundary surveys, subdivision application, and the preparation of infrastructure construction plans. The process is expected to be completed in early 2025 with constructions to follow, subject to legislative funding.

“Completing this assessment is a critical step in developing DHHL’s West Maui landholdings for beneficiaries who have been waiting a long time,” said Hawaiian Homes Commission Chair William J. Ailā, Jr. in a department press release. “When fully developed Honokōwai will be the largest homestead community on the island of Maui potentially serving over a thousand native Hawaiian beneficiaries and their families.”

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A review of the significant criteria outlined in HRS Chapter 343 and HAR Section 11-200.1-13 on the area’s development has been determined to not result in significant adverse effects on the natural or human environment.

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The Hawaiian Homes Commission evaluated the final EA and issued a FONSI determination at its January 2022 HHC meeting. The final EA and FONSI were published in the Environmental Review Program’s, The Environmental Notice on Feb. 8, 2022.

DHHL hosted a virtual public information meeting on July 8, 2021, following the publication of the project’s draft EA and collected public comments during the statutory 30-day public review and comment period. An additional virtual beneficiary informational meeting was held on Nov. 8, 2021.

The Department of Hawaiian Home Lands carries out Prince Jonah Kūhiō Kalanianaʻole’s vision of rehabilitating native Hawaiians by returning them to the land. Established by US Congress in 1921, with the passage of the Hawaiian Homes Commission Act, the Hawaiian homesteading program run by DHHL includes management of over 200,000 acres of land statewide with the specific purpose of developing and delivering homesteading.

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