The Queen Emma Land Company, Taubman Centers, Inc. and CoastWood Capital Group, LLC, announced Friday that they are officially moving forward with their plans to revitalize the International Market Place.
"Revitalizing the International Market Place will ensure that this destination can continue to be a gathering place for island residents and visitors from around the world," said Gov. Neil Abercrombie. "The benefits of this project are deep-rooted and far-reaching, creating jobs for local people and bolstering our tourism industry, while providing The Queen’s Medical Center with the revenue to provide life-saving services to residents and visitors across Hawai'i."
"After years of planning, we are very excited to finally move forward with the revitalization of the International Market Place," said Eric Martinson, president of the Queen Emma Land Company. "This comes at a critical time for us, as healthcare reform is affecting hospital budgets nationwide. When it opens, the new International Market Place will provide a renewed and sustainable income source for The Queen's Medical Center allowing us to continue caring for Hawai'i's people for years to come."
The new project, currently scheduled to open in spring 2016, will feature 360,000-square-feet of retail, dining and entertainment.
Located on six acres in the heart of Waikiki, the center will include approximately 60 stores, many of which are anticipated to be unique to Waikiki, a three-level Saks Fifth Avenue and seven restaurants on a third-level grand lanai. A parking garage with approximately 750 parking spaces will provide convenient access for visitors and kama'aina alike.
The well-known iconic banyan tree on the property will be preserved and incorporated into the design. Taubman has engaged a registered arborist, who has been monitoring and attending to the trees in the International Market Place for more than 40 years, to preserve and enhance the health of the tree. A plan is in pla
ce to protect the tree during the construction phase, and ensure its well-being on a long-term basis.
Developers say the project will create approximately 1,000 construction jobs and 2,500 permanent jobs.
"With its unique character and central location in the heart of Waikiki, the International Market Place has the potential to reemerge as an iconic destination for visitors from across the globe for generations to come," said Mayor Kirk Caldwell. "Queen Emma Land Company selected Taubman Centers, known for more than 60 years as a leader in creating extraordinary retail environments, to help carry forth Queen Emma’s legacy, and create a vision for revitalization that will further Queen’s mission as well as provide a significant boost to Honolulu’s tourism industry and create quality local jobs in the process."
"The International Market Place redevelopment will help tremendously to address the changing needs of Hawai'i's visitors, while continuing to enhance Waikiki's position as a premier shopping, dining and entertainment destination," said Rick Egged, president of the Waikiki Improvement Association. "By breathing new life into the very piko -- or center -- of Waikiki, the project will help Hawai'i maintain its highly desirable position in the global tourism industry as well as invite Kama'aina to revisit this special place."