Gap Housing leads to Pulelehua Compromise

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The planning commission gave their recommendation for the 882 Unit Pulelehua development on Monday. Maui Land and Pineapple and the planning commission were in a stalemate due to a dispute over the number of affordable housing units to be included in the project and a request for the developer to donate a 50 acre park. Maui Land and Pineapple had committed to make the project 50% affordable. Members of the planning commission wanted more than 50% of the units to be affordable since that 50% would also be covering part of the affordable requirement for ML&P’s Kapalua Mauka project. Maui Land and Pine argued that they could not cover the cost of the affordable units without having 50% of the project allocated to market priced housing.

A compromise was struck via what is known as “Gap Housing.” The current median home price in West Maui is $1,000,000. There is a good sized demographic of buyers who do not meet the requirements for affordable housing, but can not afford the mortgage on a million dollar home. The so called gap housing will be targeted towards a group of buyers that make between 141 percent and 200 percent of median income. Prices on the gap homes should range from $360,000 to $620,000. The final breakdown on housing will be as follows:

  • 352 Market priced homes
  • 255 Affordable units
  • An additional 125 Affordable units to meet the Kapalua Mauka requirement
  • 150 Gap Group Homes

The planning commission’s request for the 50 acre park was dropped. The blessing of the planning commission was a critical step for Pulelehua. However, the project still needs to go through County Council and State Land Use Commission Review.

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