In a 4-1 ruling, the Hawaii Supreme Court on Tuesday rejected a challenge to a state Land Use Commission decision that allowed for the development of more than 1,500 acres of prime farmland on Oahu.
That means Hoopili developer D.R. Horton can proceed with its construction of its mixed-use, 11,750-home project.
Chief Justice Mark Recktenwald joined Associate Justices Paula Nakayama and Sabrina S. McKenna in the majority along with Gary Chang, an Oahu First Circuit judge filling in for Simeon Acoba, who is now retired but who was on the court when the case was filed in February 2014. (Michael Wilson now holds Acoba’s seat.)
“The LUC in this case properly reclassified D.R. Horton-Schuler’s property from the agricultural land use district to the urban land use district,” the majority wrote, adding that the plaintiffs “did not provide persuasive argument” that the LUC violated Hawaii Administrative Rules regarding the use of the state’s resources and development.
The Hawaii Supreme Court during oral arguments in the Hoopili case in June.