The Hawaii Community Development Authority’s Kakaako board rejected a proposal from Howard Hughes Corp. to build rental housing at 988 Halekauwila.

HCDA spokeswoman Lindsey Doi said that the board voted 9-0 against the motion.

Howard Hughes already has permission to build for-sale housing at the site through a 2013 permit, but was seeking instead to build 375 rental units that would be at below-market rates for 15 years.

View of Nauru tower left and other developments and condominiums in Kakaako.  6jan2015. photograph Cory Lum

Nauru tower, left, and other developments and condominiums in Kakaako.

Cory Lum/Civil Beat

That’s more affordable units than Howard Hughes is required to provide under HCDA’s reserved housing rules. But Doi said some HCDA board members wanted to require the units to be affordable for 30 years, a proposal that Howard Hughes resisted.

Doi said the developer is allowed to return to the board in June to appeal the decision.

Honolulu has a shortage of affordable housing, and state studies have emphasized the need for thousands of new rental units to meet demand over the next five years. While Kakaako has been experiencing a construction boom, relatively little has been built for low-income residents.

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