After being vacant for nearly 15 years, the Princess Victoria Kamamalu Building in downtown Honolulu is open for business.
Wednesday’s re-dedication ceremony coincides with the 179th birthday of its namesake, Princess Victoria Kamamalu.
Gov. David Ige, cabinet members, state employees, and representatives from the royal societies gathered for the occasion.
The building’s renovation was slowed by funding delays, leading the state to spend millions on leasing private office space.
Now, after a $27 million face lift, the building is the new home of the state Department of Human Services.
“The three divisions, the Benefit, Employment, and Support Services Division, the Social Services Division, and the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation, their administrative offices are all under the same roof. We will be able to have much better coordination across the divisions, and we will have much better access for the public for a lot of our administrative offices,” said DHS director Pankaj Bhanot.
The Department of Health also occupies two floors.
Officials say the state will save approximately $2.2 million each year in lease costs.