Many years of thought and effort have gone into planning Koa Ridge. The resulting master plan for Koa Ridge sets a path to create a mixed-use community with a unique sense of place, where residents can live, work, and play in proximity to retail, services, health care, and community amenities. Koa Ridge will feature generous landscaping and open space. The new community will be one that is safe, modern, walkable, and bicycle-friendly. It will be a vibrant and healthy master-planned, sustainable community encompassing principles consistent with “smart growth.”
The values and principles shaping the project design grew out of a community visioning process that began in 2003 and included representatives of 53 community organizations and constituencies in Central O‘ahu. In translating the values and principles to a tangible land use plan, we sought to provide a variety of housing types, elevate the place of pedestrians and bicyclists, create on-site employment opportunities, and employ development practices that minimize adverse environmental impacts.
The Koa Ridge development encompasses 576 acres and will consist of 3,500 residential units, a mixed use higher density Village Center, a 28-acre medical center complex, commercial and light industrial uses, an elementary school, churches and community centers, and neighborhood and community parks.
Koa Ridge will offer a range of housing styles to accommodate residents of all ages and life stages. Locating neighborhood parks, recreation centers, and pedestrian-oriented shopping centers within easy walking distances of higher densities of residential populations will reduce dependence on automobile use. The project will include bike lanes on major streets, pedestrian paths linking residential areas with community and commercial facilities, and streets designed to accommodate City buses—all features that will encourage alternative transportation modes for shorter trips within the community and promote active lifestyles. The proposed medical complex, commercial, and light industrial areas provide substantial opportunities for on-site employment that offset the need for some residents to commute to metro Honolulu for work or health care.
There will be three primary access ways to the Koa Ridge project site: Ka Uka Boulevard (two points of ingress/egress), a new Koa Ridge Interchange at the mauka end of the site at the Pineapple Road bridge, and an access point at Kamehameha Highway on the south side of the property across from the CORP. The main road through the project site is the Koa Ridge Parkway, which will extend through the site and connect Ka Uka Boulevard with the Koa Ridge Interchange at the mauka end of the site. The Koa Ridge Medical Center will have frontage on the Parkway and the connector road to Kamehameha Highway, with an emergency vehicle access also anticipated from Ka Uka Boulevard.
The focus of activity at Koa Ridge will be the Village Center, with its higher density housing developments and mixed-use buildings. The Village Center is envisioned to be the social heart of the community providing day-to-day shopping, dining, entertainment, recreation, and learning within a unique, enhanced pedestrian environment. The Village Green will be an open landscaped area extending through the Village Center, providing a place for gathering and community activities. The Village Center may also include a church, community center, and a 150-room extended-stay hotel. An on-site bus transit station will provide convenient access to bus lines and the future rail system.
Building heights in the Village Center are expected to be four or five stories with the height stepping down to the surrounding residential neighborhoods and the community retail uses. The medical center complex is expected to have the tallest buildings with a possible height of four to five stories.
A significant open space and pedestrian/bicycle trail network provides a variety of recreational opportunities. A continuous bicycle and pedestrian system (portions of which will pass along the edge of Kīpapa Gulch) will link the neighborhoods and activity areas. Near the proposed Koa Ridge Interchange, a small area of commercial use will be integrated with a mixed use development to serve the residential community at the mauka end of the site.
The general land uses illustrated on the Master Land Use Plan are described below:
Low Density Residential (LDR)
These are primarily single family detached homes on varying lot sizes. These areas will also include neighborhood parks and private common area parks that serve as focal points and activity centers of the community.
Medium Density Residential (MDR)
Planned to be adjacent to the Village Center and other retail and commercial uses, these medium density districts would include townhouses, row houses, stacked flats, and live-work residential units.
Mixed Use & High Density Residential (HDR)
Mixed Use and High Density Residential uses are planned within the Village Center. Mixed Use districts could include commercial and retail uses with office or residential uses above ground floor businesses. High Density Residential areas include elevator served multi-family buildings of up to four stories.
Commercial and Light Industrial (CI)
Retail, commercial, and light industrial districts are included to serve the neighborhoods and surrounding communities and to provide a variety of employment opportunities within Koa Ridge Makai. These Retail and Commercial uses are located to be conveniently accessed from the regional transportation corridors.
Community amenities, such as community centers and churches, will be included within Koa Ridge Makai to help fulfill the core values of creating gathering places and providing for a multi-generational community.
Medical Center (M)
The Koa Ridge Medical Center Complex is intended to provide comprehensive primary and secondary care medical services for the community and the surrounding residents of Central O‘ahu and North Shore. The Medical Center Complex will provide increased job opportunities. It could incorporate and build upon the acute care services at Wahiawa General Hospital at a site that is accessible to regional transportation corridors, population, and employment centers.
Currently, the medical center is in its early planning stages. Long range forecasts indicate a need for the Koa Ridge Medical Center complex to maintain capacity for future growth as the health services mature and its service population continues to grow and age.
Based on initial area population projections, the Koa Ridge facility will support a wide range of healthcare services, including physician services, in-patient acute care, emergency and diagnostic services for the community so that area residents will not have to travel to Honolulu. In addition, the center will support an ambulatory care center, medical offices and a skilled nursing facility.
A Community Park of approximately 19 acres is located on the eastern edge of Koa Ridge Makai for active ball fields and will include a comfort station, and parking areas. The Community Park site will be dedicated to the City and County of Honolulu. Integral to the establishment and identity of neighborhoods, a variety of smaller parks of approximately 1/2 to 1-1/2 acres in size are planned. A neighborhood park will be located within walking distance of most residents.
A site for a 12-acre elementary school is centrally located within Koa Ridge.
Open Spaces / Buffers (OS)
A variety of open space areas are planned along the edges of the site, both along the H-2 Freeway and the western property boundary. Pedestrian and bikeways will connect these open spaces--which also provide a buffer to the freeway--with the surrounding neighborhoods.