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Kutak Rock Serves as Underwriter’s Counsel for University of Hawai’i Foundation Student Housing Financing

News | November 30, 2021


Kutak Rock served as counsel to the underwriter in connection with the issuance by the Public Finance Authority of its $62,205,000 Student Housing Revenue Bonds (University of Hawai’i Foundation Project) Senior Series 2021A-1 (Tax-Exempt), $14,210,000 Student Housing Revenue Bonds (University of Hawai’i Foundation Project) Senior Series 2021A-2 (Taxable) and $15,500,000 Student Housing Revenue Bonds (University of Hawai’i Foundation Project) Subordinate Series 2021B (Tax-Exempt).

The Public Finance Authority issued the Series 2021 Bonds on behalf of UHF RISE Student Housing LLC, a Delaware limited liability company whose sole member is the University of Hawai’i Foundation. The proceeds of the Series 2021 Bonds will be used by UHF RISE to (a) finance the development, construction, renovation and equipping of a new and existing building to consist of the following elements: a Student Housing Facility, a PACE Facility, an Office Facility and a Retail Facility to be constructed on land located within the campus boundaries of the University of Hawai’i at Manoa.

The Project, to be known as the University of Hawai’i Residences for Innovative Student Entrepreneurs (“RISE”) project will be located at the former site of the Atherton YMCA at the corner of Metcalf and University Avenues directly across from the main entrance of the University’s flagship Manoa campus in Honolulu, Hawai’i. The Project aims to engage UH Manoa students and faculty from multiple disciplines and departments, alongside business professionals. In addition, the Project will encourage local students to attend UH Manoa, providing them with a unique educational opportunity found in very few global research universities with a goal of attracting entrepreneurial students, inventors and researchers from around the world. The RISE Project will be a live-learn-work community that incorporates student housing, incubator space for startups, comprehensive support services and programs, as well as a large co-working/collaboration area in support of innovation and its entrepreneurs. Food and beverage operations, supported by residents of the center and the neighboring public, will also be housed within the Project and will ensure use as a gathering place.

The Project’s student residence component consists of 220 units and 374 beds within a six-story podium building. Plans are for the development to offer one and two bed units. Each floor of the Student Housing Facility will have community bathrooms, kitchens, and lounge areas. The Project will also include study areas throughout the entire Project.

The University anticipates extending its partnership with the established Pacific Asian Center of Entrepreneurship (“PACE”) and relocating PACE from their current space at the Shidler College of Business, to the second floor of the Project. The PACE Facility portion of the Project will be 8,978 SF of co-working/collaborative and academic teaching space open to all University students, faculty and the public. The area is designed to be a 21st century academic space pairing classrooms, 3D printers and a maker space, designed to accommodate different sized classes, teams and activities with a gathering place with the intention of becoming the one-stop shop for the growing number of UH Manoa programs currently supporting research, innovation and entrepreneurship. The PACE Facility will be welcoming, creative, and collaborative for students and faculty to network and share ideas.

The Office Facility consists of a gross leasable area of approximately 14,598 square feet located on the second and third floor of the Project to be leased as office space to the University pursuant to a Sublease for uses and programs related to its Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation.

The Retail Facility consists of a gross leasable area of approximately 1,700 square feet located on the first floor of the Project to be leased as a retail space to one or more parties.

The Project is pursuing LEED Certification, specifically under the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) for Building Design and Construction for New Construction version 4. 

Kutak Rock partners Fred Marienthal and Jennifer Barrett worked on this financing.