There has been some recent discussion in the Honolulu City Council regarding the rail project plan. There are some who are looking to change the plans and stop the rail short of Ala Moana, ending it at Middle Street where riders are to transfer to buses and potentially “get caught in surface-street congestion”. Not only would the rail not serve its purpose of alleviating traffic in these types of areas, it would require that we forfeit the $1.55 billion federal grant for the project, $450 million of which has already been spent and taxpayers would have to pay back.
Star Advertiser’s editorial “Don’t Deviate From The Original Plan For Rail” reads:
“They need to stop and think about what they’d be getting for whatever a Kapolei-to-Middle-Street rail line would cost. The answer? Not much.”
“Honolulu’s population and traffic challenges are growing unabated. Giving its residents the commuting options they need remains a bedrock responsibility of city government. Along a traffic corridor as narrow as Honolulu’s, with no room for street-level expansion, elevated rail is still the rational choice. It can get people where they need to go. Let’s stick to the basic plan rather than waffling pointlessly, and get the job done as efficiently as possible.”
Facing East in the Hoopili Area – Picture Credit: Honolulu Transit
Grube, Nick. “Caldwell: Feds Withholding Honolulu Rail Funds Until Council Acts” Civil Beat 13 November 2015
“Don’t Deviate From The Original Plan For Rail” Star Advertiser 15 November 2015