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Plans to build more luxury condos in south Maui stirs debate among residents

Updated: Apr. 27, 2021 at 8:16 PM HST
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HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - Many Maui residents are frustrated over the plan for another gated community with luxury condos in south Maui.

Critics said the island needs more affordable homes.

“It’s offensive to residents who feel like they need to beg for affordable housing that offers 10-foot-by-10-foot bedrooms in units tightly packed on top of one another,” said south Maui resident Nick Drance.

The proposed Wailea Resort Residential Project will be a gated community on 23 acres of land near Kilohana Park off Kapili Street.

The development would include 57 single-family homes, and it’s expected to cost between $3.2 million and $4.1 million each.

An environmental assessment was presented to the Maui Planning Commission on Tuesday.

Many residents made their voices heard.

“The infrastructure in this area is not in place. The highway above it, is a traffic jam,” said south Maui resident Michael Wildberger. “There really shouldn’t be any more development.”

The project management consulting firm said a portion of the project’s property tax revenue will go to the county’s Affordable Housing Fund, and the project will have beneficial economic and fiscal impacts on the community.

“This project in my opinion meets all the attributes of a sustainable renewable project. They are going to install photo-voltaic panels on the roof as part of the overall project,” said Wailea resident Glenn Yamasaki.

“I think that makes it very appealing for visitors as well as perspective residents here in Wailea.”

Construction for the proposed project is estimated to cost about $130 million over a three-year period.

It’s anticipated that approximately 90% of the units will be utilized as part-time residences.

Instead of voting on the project, the Maui Planning Commission recessed late Tuesday evening until its next meeting on May 11.

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