The University of Hawaii at Manoa is looking to build more campus housing for families.
School officials say there is a huge need for more affordable housing for students and faculty.
“Housing is expensive. We have faculty housing. Sometimes we don’t have enough, so we want to fill that need,” said UH communications director Dan Meisenzahl.
Meisenzahl says the shortage of affordable rental housing near UH Manoa also creates challenges for students with families.
The university is looking at transforming what used to be the National Marine Fisheries Service building on Dole Street into family-oriented housing.
“It’s a location that actually NOAA had occupied for some time,” Meisenzahl said. “They relocated, I believe, to Ford Island and so this area, this piece of property of this corner of the campus recently became available.”
The goal is to partner with a developer who can commit to turning the property into housing for students with families who are unable to utilize existing housing options.
“I think it’s incredibly important for working families to be able to come to school and have housing available to them,” said student Joy Inamoto.
“We’re inviting developers to come take a look at what we’re hoping we can achieve, and if they see some value in partnering with us and creating something that would have housing for graduate students, faculty, and possibly others,” said Meisenzahl.
Meisenzahl says they are also open to there being some retail shops and childcare facilities incorporated into the plan so the property can also generate income.
He says the project is still in the very early stages and could change depending on the response from developers.