The University of Hawai‘i-West O‘ahu (UHWO) Non-Campus Lands Urban Design Plan (Non-Campus Lands UDP) was prepared for a 364-acre property surrounding the new UHWO campus in Kapolei. Closely linked with UHWO campus, the vision for the UHWO Non-Campus Lands is to create a “University District,” clearly distinguished from other developments within the region. The plan envisions a sustainable mixed-use environment that supports the UHWO campus, provides necessary services and amenities for faculty and students, and also serves residents and the larger Kapolei community.
The plan provides a framework for development based on a vision and supporting principles, including general guidelines and standards, as well as specific guidelines for the various neighborhoods (ranging from higher density Transit-Oriented Developments (TODs) to lower density residential neighborhoods). It encourages development that is designed to be culturally and climatically appropriate to the ‘Ewa region at a scale and density that can grow as the region grows.
The plan was prepared through a collaborative effort between the UHWO and the City’s Department of Planning and Permitting (DPP), led by the planning consultant PBR HAWAII & Associates, Inc. Together, the planning team integrated various City plans for the region into the design guidelines, including plans for the Honolulu High-Capacity Transit Corridor Project and the TOD plan for the East Kapolei area. Acknowledging that a TOD development will not occur overnight, the plan includes a phasing/implementation strategy for the projects that allows for transition from lower density developments to a higher density TOD.
The 2013 APA Hawai‘i Chapter Awards Jury found that the project’s site plan exemplifies many of the desired traits of new mixed use projects. The plan is comprehensive in that it provides recommendations for design and development standards as well as provisions for transportation, land uses, sustainability and development. It effectively surrounds the UHWO campus with compatible uses at reasonable densities, connected by complete streets and greenways, all of which underscore a sense of place and promotes neighborhood sociability.