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Villages at Lai Opua ‘green’ homes

Kahu Larry Kahekili Ursua leads the traditional blessing. (Photo special to Hawaii 24/7)

MEDIA RELEASE

The state Department of Hawaiian Home Lands (DHHL) and Armstrong Builders, LLC, presented ceremonial keys Tuesday to the newest families moving into homesteads within the Villages of Lai Opua, located in Kealakehe.

The new homes in Village 5, constructed by Armstrong Builders, are part of the department’s first new “green” residential project in North Kona.

The ceremony also included a traditional Hawaiian blessing led by Kahu Larry Kahekili Ursua and remarks by Hawaiian Homes Commission Chairman Alapaki Nahale-a and Armstrong Builders CEO Bob Armstrong.

Albert Regidor and his family were among those given keys Tuesday.

“I applied 10 years ago,” said Regidor, who lived on Oahu for 56 years and is married to a Honokaa native. “Its short compared to other people. But the day that I got notice that I got a home in Lai Opua, it was a day I will never forget. Finally. The day is here I can call Kona and Lai Opua my home.”

“We rejoice with these families who will be living Prince Jonah Kuhio Kalanianaole’s dream of returning native Hawaiians to the aina to flourish in a sustainable lifestyle,” Nahale-a said. “These new homesteads in Kona are just the beginning of more homesteading opportunities being planned for development in West Hawaii.”

Currently, there are 43 homes being built in Phase 5 of Lai Opua, which is scheduled to be completed by September 2011. Plans call for a total of 100 homes in the neighborhood.

Combining modern technology with Hawaii Island’s natural renewable resources, the homes range from three to five bedrooms and offer a number of green features that combine modern technology with Kona’s abundance of natural, renewable resources, such as the sun, wind and rain, to make the homes energy efficient and comfortable.

Green amenities include solar photovoltaic panels that provide electricity and save homeowners as much as $100 per month on their electricity bills; large windows and a whole-house fan that diminish the need for air conditioning; low-flush toilets to decrease water consumption; and a Rainwater HOG that collects rainwater for watering plants or washing down the driveway.

“Our vision was to create energy efficient, green sustainable homes that will last for generations,” said James R. Keller, President of Armstrong Builders. “We believe that quality is not something that you should pay extra for; it should be expected, and that is what we strive to achieve.”

Lai Opua, meaning “peaceful cloud” in the Hawaiian language, is symbolic for the emotions of hope and good fortune that homeowners feel toward their new community.

Applicants who were offered homes in Lai Opua Village 5 are invited to an open house from 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Saturday, June 25. There will be a brief presentation, followed by a tour of completed homes and models under construction.

To RSVP, contact Nadine at the office of James Kometani, Inc., by calling (808) 591-8166 or toll-free 1-877-229-5260.

Albert Regidor received the key to his new LEED certified home on Hawaiian Home Lands from Robert Armstrong of Armstrong Builders. The Regidor Ohana can move into their home immediately. (Photo special to Hawaii 24/7 by Margaret Masunaga)

About Armstrong Builders, LLC

Established in 1976, Armstrong Builders, LLC is an award-winning integrated multi-disciplinary company dedicated to outstanding service and craftsmanship in the areas of custom home building, luxury, affordable housing and residential community development, and commercial construction.

The company is also a leader in Hawaii’s green building industry with a team of LEED accredited professionals and a commitment to building and living sustainably.

For more information visit www.armstrongbuilders.com or call (808) 848-2484.

About DHHL Developments within the Villages of Lai Opua

An estimated 572 acres of land in Kealakehe was transferred to DHHL in 1997 for homesteads. Village 3, also known as Kaniohale, was completed in 2002. Kaniohale consists of 184 developer-built single-family dwellings, 41 self-help homes and a community center. Village 4 is currently under development.

For more information on this and other DHHL projects, visit www.hawaii.gov/dhhl

One of the new LEED certified homes. (Photo special to Hawaii 24/7)

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