The 117-unit, 37-story “Aloha Kai” condominium project planned for the site of the YMCA of Honolulu Central branch on Atkinson Drive across from Ala Moana Center is expected to start construction by early 2016, the developer of the project confirmed to PBN Tuesday.
California-based MB Property Acquisitions LLC has partnered with the Japanese firm Tama Home on the development.
Michael Blumenthal, president of MB Property Acquisitions, told PBN that the project, which will include a new 30,000-square-foot YMCA Central branch with no residential units, a swimming pool and a sophisticated aqua facility that will cater to seniors, will have five levels of parking, with units being built atop those levels of parking.
Aloha Kai encountered a delay after the developer asked for a zoning change that included increasing the its height limit to 350 feet from 150 feet.
“It has taken a while, but we are moving forward,” Blumenthal said, noting that the demolition of the YMCA Central branch should begin in about five months. “It took a little more than a year to get the zone change, but that enhanced the economics of the deal.”
He also pointed out that the focus of the entire project has been on dealing with the YMCA Central branch at first, which will be redeveloped into a three-story, 30,000-square-foot facility.
“The plans for the YMCA [are] 95 percent complete, in terms of the working drawings,” Blumenthal said. “We really focused on designing the YMCA before jumping into the condo tower.”
The conceptual drawings for the condo tower are nearly complete, with Architects Hawaii Ltd., Swinerton Builders and Locations LLC working on the project.
The project, which will encompass about 150,000-square-feet of net saleable square footage, will have four units per floor, with a boutique-like, very private type of feel, according to Blumenthal.
The pricing of the project is still being determined, although he said it is probably going to be around $1,400 per square foot, meaning that a one-bedroom unit of roughly 600 square feet unit would be priced around $840,000.
Aloha Kai also will have a rooftop pool and all units will include lanais that overlook the ocean. There will be no commercial units in the project.
Blumenthal said he was one of the few bidders of the YMCA site to have given the nonprofit organization a portion of the site to build a new branch.
A little more than three years ago, MB Property Acquisitions announced its purchase of about 1.5 acres of the YMCA’s 1.77-acre lot for an undisclosed amount. Blumenthal said he expects to close on the purchase in about three months.
“We have substantial approvals,” he said. “We worked hard to provide a nice facility for the Y.”
The condo part of the project is expected to be completed in about two years.
Pacific Business News