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Kapolei is a master-planned community in Honolulu County, Hawaii, United States, on the island of Oahu. It is colloquially known as the “second city” of Oahu, in relation to Honolulu. Officially, it is a census-designated place (CDP) within the consolidated city-county of Honolulu.
The community takes its name from a volcanic cone, Puʻu o Kapolei. In the Hawaiian language, puʻu means “hill” and Kapo lei means “beloved Kapo”. According to legend, Kapo, Goddess of Fertility was sister to Pele, Goddess of Fire and Namaka Goddess of the Sea.
Much of the land is part of the estate of industrialist James Campbell. Kapolei’s major developer is Kapolei Property Development, a subsidiary of James Campbell Company. Kapolei sits primarily upon former sugarcane and pineapple fields.
In 1955 the Kapolei master plan was drafted and revised 3 different times beginning in 1974. In 1977 the new General Provision Plan adopted the Oahu General Plan which dubbed Kapolei “second urban center” (SUC) on the island of Oahu. In 1986 the Ewa Master Plan was revised to include the SUC and the initial residential construction in the Kapolei area began in the late 1980s with commercial developments springing up shortly thereafter. Nearly two decades later, in 2006 the Kapolei area had more than 800 companies, agencies, and organizations making up approximately 25,000 jobs. As of the 2010 census, the Kapolei CDP had a population of 15,186 people.
The original development objectives for the City of Kapolei were to include: an employment center, a new center for offices and businesses, a center for government offices, a city of people walking, biking, or bussing, the latest energy efficient technologies such as water conservation and recycling, and the most efficient connectivity for commuting on Oahu. In essence a “smart city”. The design plan for development ensures that the 7 themes of Kapolei remain the same throughout its construction. These include 1. Hawaiian Garden City 2. Healthy Living 3. Complete Community Services 4. Pedestrian friendly 5. Past/Present/Future design architecture 6. Sustainability 7. Technology.