Kaka’ako Makai Area Rule Amendments

Proposed Kaka’ako Makai Area Plan and Rule Amendments

Public Hearing Notice

November 1, 2023 at 9:45 a.m. Presentation Hearing
Staff Report

December 6, 2023 at 9:00 a.m. Decision-Making Hearing
Staff Report

Place: Hearings will be convened virtually and at a physical location (See the Public Hearing Notice for details)

11.2023 Draft Makai Plan

11.2023 Draft Makai Rules

Makai Proposed Amendments Matrix 10.2023


In 1976, HCDA was tasked with the revitalization of the Kaka‘ako Community Development District (CDD), bounded by Pi‘ikoi, King, Punchbowl Streets and Ala Moana Boulevard, referred to now as the “Mauka area.”
In 1987, the Legislature expanded the Kaka‘ako district by adding the Honolulu waterfront from Kewalo Basin to the Aloha Tower boundary, later adjusting the district waterfront from Kewalo Basin to Forrest Avenue, and the Hawaiian Electric Company power plant site, referred to now as the “Makai area.”

The Kaka‘ako Makai Community Development District (CDD) Hawai‘i Administrative Rules, Title 15, Chapter 23, was enacted on November 3, 2005 and are still in effect.

These rules include approximately 50-acres of mixed-use zone with commercial and residential uses.  And, utilize dated zoning controls such as restrictions on density, allowed land uses, building setbacks, and off-street parking and loading requirements.

In 2006, Act 317 became law, Hawai‘i Revised Statute 206E-31.5, which banned residential development in the Makai area.  At that time, the HCDA Board also established the Kaka‘ako Community Planning Advisory Council (CPAC), which conducted an extensive planning and community outreach effort which resulted in the Kaka‘ako Makai Conceptual Master Plan. The CPAC worked with community stakeholders including the Native Hawaiian community, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs, and the Friends of Kewalo Basin Park Association, and held many public meetings to develop guiding principles and the conceptual master plan for the redevelopment of Kaka‘ako Makai.

The CPAC analyzed the physical area, reviewed the local economic influences, market demand and viability of commercial and other land uses. Eventually, the group codified 14 guiding principles for the area.

The 2011 Conceptual calls for public benefit uses in Kaka‘ako Makai, such as a performing arts center, museum, community center, farmers market, or fish market.  On May 18, 2011, the Authority unanimously adopted the 2011 Conceptual Plan as the guiding document for reviewing and approving any state-owned lands in Kaka‘ako Makai.

In 2011, the Authority revised the Kaka‘ako Mauka Area rules, as well as the Kalaeloa CDD Rules. These revisions differed from the traditional zoning controls used for the 2005 Makai Area Rules and established a form-based zoning code that regulates key characteristics of the public realm, such as building facades, form and mass, scale and street design.

Over the last several years, Authority staff have been drafting updates to the Kalaeloa and Kaka‘ako Mauka Area Plan and Rules. The proposed updates, which are expected to go through formal rulemaking processes later this year, are intended to clarify application of existing rules, simplify the permit processes, and improve overall community planning efforts. In the Kaka‘ako Mauka CDD, the update will also introduce incentive-based transit-oriented development zoning rules to achieve enhanced community benefits.

Codifying HRS 206E-31.5 and the Kaka‘ako Makai Conceptual Master Plan into the Kaka‘ako Makai CDD Rules would provide applicants with clearer and consistent direction when seeking entitlements for land development proposals from the Authority.  In addition, the updates would also provide a basis for the Authority to evaluate the planning and environmental impacts of any future legislative or other development initiatives in the Kaka‘ako Makai CDD.

On June 7, 2023, the HCDA staff went to the Kaka‘ako Meeting and informed the Authority that staff would conduct public outreach activities and work with stakeholders on these proposed rule amendments, and then formally request that the Authority initiate formal rulemaking hearings process at the end of the Summer 2023.

HCDA hosted a Kaka’ako Makai community meeting to gather input in-person and virtually via Zoom on Aug 9, 2023 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. HST. Community Meeting flyer 8.9.2023 
Community Meeting Presentation 08.09.2023

On September 6, 2023, the Authority authorized the executive director to schedule hearings pursuant to Chapter 91, Hawai’i Revised Statues (HRS), and Chapter 201M, HRS, Regarding proposed amendments to the Makai Plan and Rules, Chapter 15-23, Hawaii Administrative Rules, for the Makai Area of the Kaka’ako Community Development District, to reflect the Section 206E-31.5, HRS, ban on residential development; incorporate the Kaka’ako Makai Conceptual Plan; and streamline permitting.

In September 2023, a presentation on the Kaka’ako Makai Rules was made to the Small Business Regulatory Review Board.
Makai Rules Presentation

Current Plan and Rules

2005 Makai Area Rules – HAR Ch. 15-23
2011 Kaka‘ako Makai Conceptual Master Plan
2011 Kaka‘ako Makai Conceptual Master Plan Appendices

Public Comments

Written Public Testimony received by June 5
Additional Public Testimony received through June 7
Written Presentation Hearing Testimony received through Oct 31
Written Public Hearing Testimony received by December 5