Journalism's Future ... Now

The Mānoa Mirror

Journalism's Future ... Now

The Mānoa Mirror

Journalism's Future ... Now

The Mānoa Mirror

Planned affordable housing project in Waipahu generates mixed reactions

Two towers slated for Waipahu Depot Street and Hikimoe Street
Preston Ancheta
A run-down Waipahu Drugstore sign stands amid old buildings.

A proposed affordable housing project next to Waipahu Transit Center is drawing mixed reactions from neighbors.

Developers of Keawalau at Waipahu say the project is “for Waipahu,” with two towers of affordable family housing on Waipahu Depot Street and Hikimoe Street.

Some welcome the project.

“It’s good for the community because I would like the changes for our future children,” said Marilyn, who declined to give her last name.

Others question the need for another big development, with businesses like Times Supermarket already in the area.

“I’m kind of indifferent because I’m thinking, is this really necessary,” said neighbor Keilani Amascual. “I don’t think it’s for Waipahu. I think it’s for the people who want money. … I take any new development that’s for the Hawaiian Islands with a grain of salt.”

Despite the debate over Keawalau, construction is moving forward, with events and murals promoting the project.

Preston Ancheta is a second-year journalism major at the University of Hawaii at Mānoa. He was born and raised in Oahu and grew up in Waipahu and graduated from Waipahu High School in 2022. He believes that everyone has a story to tell and as an aspiring journalist, he feels that it is his job to help them tell their stories of strength, of courage, of love. He likes to tell stories that shine a positive light into the world. In times when it seems like we see a lot of negativity in the news, it seems as if that’s all that is there. But, if there are more positive and heartfelt stories, it restores humanity.

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