The vision to transform Mayor Wright Homes into a mixed-income community is starting to take shape with the announcement of the master developer team. Hunt Companies will be in charge and work with McCormack Baron Salazar and Vitus Group to redevelop the low-income housing complex which has been in use for more than 60 years. They have been involved in 12 affordable housing projects in Hawaii, according to team officials.
There are currently 364 homes on the 20-acre property in Palama. The state is now negotiating to have 1,200 to 1,500 units built, depending on the project's mixed financing. The community is in the transit-oriented development area for the Iwilei rail station.
"The transformed Mayor Wright will be a vibrant community. It will be a much-desired place to live where people from all walks of life will enjoy and proudly call home," said Steve Colon, president of the Hawaii division of Hunt Companies.
"All of our tenants are protected under federal law. Any relocation plan that we will negotiate will include making sure that they get relocated until this project is completed and they will have the first right of return," said Hakim Ouansafi, executive director of the Hawaii Public Housing Authority.
The rent for current residents will also remain the same. The team will be reaching out to residents for input on the development, which will also include stores and other businesses. There is no cost estimate yet for the project. Demolition of the units could begin in 18 months, according to Ouansafi.