HONOLULU (KHON2) — The city’s Purchasing Division, under the Department of Budget and Fiscal Services (BFS), announced Monday that the Request for Qualifications (RFQ) for a potential public-private partnership (P3) with development partners has been issued and interested parties have until October 31 to respond.

The development partner is expected to design, build, finance, operate and maintain the redeveloped Neal S. Blaisdell campus.

“The proposed public-private partnership would benefit the city and provide a next generation civic center for our residents by paying a significant portion of the costs related to construction,” said Mayor Kirk Caldwell. “Civic centers have proven to be economic drivers for cities around the world. Unless we upgrade, Honolulu will no longer be able to attract the kinds of arts, culture, entertainment and sporting events that our citizens enjoy. This is a project that will serve the community for decades to come.”

The city is currently undertaking an estimated $772 million redevelopment of the 22-acre Blaisdell campus, which is under the control of the Department of Enterprise Services.

The existing facility opened in 1964 and served the community for over half a century, but time has taken its toll and the demands for a 21st century entertainment experience from artists and patrons continues to grow.

After almost five years of community engagement and planning, the city is taking the final steps toward selecting a private sector partner to share in the cost of this once-in-a-century undertaking.

“As the producers of the Broadway in Hawai’i season we are delighted to see the City and County of Honolulu take this next step in modernizing the entire Blaisdell complex,” said Steve Boulay, chief operating officer with MagicSpace Entertainment. “The initial commitment this community has shown in supporting and growing this important cultural asset helped us book ‘Phantom of the Opera’ at the Blaisdell for four weeks this coming August, in addition to ‘Rent’ and ‘The Illusionists’ this fall. This RFQ will now help us finalize the booking of several new productions, including at least one Hawaiian premier, before the renovation closing date towards the end of 2020. Furthermore, this next step in the process gets us that much closer to forecasting a reopening date in early 2023, which will help us negotiate the Hawaiian premiere of some of the most popular shows that will be touring at that time.”

Who pays for the cost of the project?

· P3s are a contractual arrangement between the city and a private sector development partner to share the costs of the redevelopment project so that taxpayers only pay a portion of the total construction cost.

· The relative share of construction costs will be determined by the partner’s proposal to the city.

· Typically, the development partner funds the entire cost of construction and the city pays its share in increments over the life of the agreement.

· Taxpayers receive 100 percent of the benefits of a state-of-the-art entertainment facility and civic center while footing just a fraction of the total upfront cost.

How does the private sector development partner recover their investment?

· The partner will receive availability payments from the city for the operation and maintenance of the Neal S. Blaisdell Center over the life of the agreement.

To view the project Master Plan, follow this link: http://www4.honolulu.gov/bfspurchasingbids/main/vueOpenBids.asp?sType=C

The Request for Qualifications is also available online: www.honolulu.gov/pur

The Request for Qualifications submission deadline is October 31 at 3 p.m. Hawaii Standard Time.

For more information or assistance, contact the Purchasing Division at 768-3205.