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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Friday, January 31, 2003

Kaua'i center work to finish in early '04

By Jan TenBruggencate
Advertiser Kaua'i Bureau

LIHU'E, Kaua'i — The $12 million, two-year renovation of Kaua'i's largest shopping center will be mostly complete by November, when work will halt for the holiday season.

A new building to house an American Savings Bank and Beneficial Finance is part of a Kukui Grove renovation.

Jan TenBruggencate • The Honolulu Advertiser

After that, the only portion of work remaining at Kukui Grove Shopping Center will be the resurfacing of the pavement in the public areas, said center general manager Wade Lord. That work should be completed early in 2004.

Kukui Grove was built in 1982. Its redesign and renovation comes under the new ownership of its parent company, Grove Farm, by former AOL Time Warner chief Steve Case. Grove Farm officials said Case's decision to step down from AOL Time Warner should have no impact on the company.

The center is undergoing a facelift, and in several locations, a complete redesign. The major south entry, alongside Star Market, is being rebuilt, and will be lined with shops. A new entry into the interior of the center is being built on the north side in the area occupied by the Kaua'i Products Store. The store will move to another location inside the center.

A new building is being completed in what previously was a merchandise receiving area between Longs Drug and Sears stores. It will house American Savings Bank, Beneficial Finance and an unnamed third tenant.

Lord said the expansion will increase leasable square footage from 313,000 to 330,000.

Among the center's prospective new tenants are Starbucks, Jamba Juice and T-Mobile, Lord said. He said the center is negotiating with a tenant to occupy the space previously leased by J.C. Penney.

Construction work on the center started late in 2001. Early phases of the work were done by A.C. Kobayashi, Kaua'i Builders and Cove Development. Later portions are pending bids.