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Feb. 3, 2012

Developer Donates $10M New UH Campus

By Liviu Oltean, Associate Editor

The University of Hawaii received a $10 million donation from the developers of the 725-acre Palamanui mixed-use project on the Kona Coast.

Pacific Business News reported that Palamanui LLC has wired a payment of $5.2 million to the university. The rest of the donation has been placed in escrow, and it will be delivered as soon as the road connecting the Kona Palisades subdivision to the new campus is completed.

M.R.C. Greenwood said that the new campus will represent an example of the university’s endeavors to bring higher education to underprivileged areas. The campus will be developed on 78 acres owned by the university in the vicinity of the Palamanui project, and it will feature about 23,000 square feet of space. The university is hoping to break ground later this year, the completion date having been set tentatively for 2014.

The campus will serve about 700 students, and it will represent the first physical home for the community college in West Hawaii. In addition, it is said that the campus will be the most energy-efficient college in the U.S. The project encompasses the use of photovoltaic panels, wind turbines, and a system that reuses wastewater for landscaping.

Palamanui is expecting approval to start work on a project that will bring water and electricity to the area. Upon the completion of the project, Hunt Cos. will commence the development of a business park, town commercial center and a hotel.

Steve Colon, executive vice president of Hunt Cos. and managing member of Palamanui, commented that the developers hope to benefit the real estate market in the region by improving the area’s infrastructure.

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