KALIHI, OAHU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Up to 100 homeless individuals will be able to live in a new housing facility in Sand Island before transitioning into permanent supportive housing, all part of plans to improve the homeless situation on Oahu.
Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell announced plans on Tuesday to move forward with Hale Mauliola – named after the Hawaiian goddess of health and well-being – which will provide temporary housing for 75 to 100 people for about two months. Service providers will work with the homeless individuals as they transition into new housing, part of the Continuum of Care program to ultimately get people out of homelessness.
The city issued two Request for Proposals, one for construction of the Modular Container Homes and another for a service provider to offer support services on site. Bids are due on June 18.
The plan calls for up to 25 modified shipping containers – each divided into three or four units approximately 40 to 53 square feet – which will be located at a vacant lot just past the access bridge to Sand Island. Each unit will include windows, a lockable door and portable lighting. Pets that don't pose any threats to other residents are allowed.
A trailer will be designated for hygienic purposes, providing private individual showers, toilets, sinks and electric outlets. Washbasins and clotheslines will also be provided for residents to do their laundry.
The service provider will offer intake services Monday through Friday during business hours and will accommodate both referrals and drop-in clients.
The units will be free for qualified residents, but they must be engaged in case management and a service plan that allows them to transition to housing or shelter within 60 days. Individuals will be prohibited from pitching tents or temporary structures at the site.
Homeless persons arriving at Hale Mauliola will:
- go through a standardized intake and assessment process to determine their specific needs,
- have a case manager assigned,
- have an individualized support program developed to determine a path forward providing the individual with the opportunity to begin the transition out of homelessness, and
- be offered various housing and shelter options that may help them begin the road back to housing in the community.
Initial costs amount to $500,000 for construction, but the city will spend about $1.5 million on support services.
The city hopes to open Hale Mauliola in the fall.