Most people know it as the old Kam Swap meet parking lot, but it is on the verge of being transformed into a model development tied to rail.
It will include residential towers, commercial development as well green space and a hotel.
"We are hoping the retail component that includes the market and drugstore, and hopeful a hotel. We would be able to start construction in 2015 and we would love to be open by holidays of 2016," said John Manavian, master developer of the site.
That's the vision now that the council has given the nod to the project.
Supporters were there to see the plan past this hurdle.
"We are very fortunate to have someone, a developer, who listens to the community and changes it to address with all the issues that have been brought up," said Aiea resident Terrance Kawano.
Surprisingly, an ominous word of warning came from the Building Trades and Construction Council.
"It's a great developer’s agreement. It's not a great community development agreement,” said union leader Kika Bukoski.
The project moves forward with a developer’s agreement instead of memorandum of understanding common in other projects.
Bukoski believes the city gave away too much.
He said the deal waters down affordable housing requirements and granted extensive concessions which allows the developer to build affordable rental units, or to buy developers credits outside of the Aiea area.
"Our job here is to be good stewards of the land, to make sure that what we approve is good change, good for the community, good for the future, and I believe this is," said area councilmember Breene Harimoto.
The community benefits include a million dollar endowment fund, traffic improvements, green space, a pedestrian bridge and public restrooms.
"This is the first development agreement of its kind that's been negotiated in the history of Honolulu and it’s going to set the precedent," Bukowski said.
This project is tied to Pearlridge rail station.
Bukoski said other developers have been closely watching to see how this deal would play out as they plan to map out opportunities around the other 20 rail stations.
Council chairman Ernie Martin cast the only no vote on the development agreement. The rest were yes votes-- five with reservations. The resolution will now go the mayor for his signature.