The movie trilogy, "Lord of the Rings" had its 2002 episode called "The Two Towers". Well, perhaps as we glance at the Kaka'ako skyline over the next decade, we can refer to the efforts there as "Lords of the Bling" and some might call the episodes "Too Many Towers", for it now seems that not a month goes by without an announcement or some sketch of yet another planned high rise in the Kapiolani/Ala Moana/Ward Avenue corridor.
Obviously, there has to be a market for such edifices to be conceived of and then built, and the theory here is that demand outweighs supply and the need for housing will continue to grow. With land at such a premium, and with many people not wishing to fight the incessant traffic coming into town, the idea to build up rather than out makes sense. The Hughes Corporation itself has plans for more than 20 towers with over 4,000 units in the coming years.
And while traffic, parking, sewer, and water concerns have been addressed, the city decisions made thus far are allowing and even encouraging more building. Keep in mind that not every project will come to fruition, and perhaps the existing zoning laws will morph to slow down or stop the progression of tall towers in this three square mile area.
Yes, the mechanical crane is once again becoming the state bird in the skies above Honolulu. Under the premise that "if you build it, they will come" and the lure of business opportunities that come with an improving economy, the landscape and skyline of a relatively small area in the heart of Honolulu are going to see lots of change in the coming decade as both the commercial and residential sides of Kaka'ako reach new heights with all of these lofty ideas… literally. Think about it…