Civil Beat Topics

Honolulu Rail Project

The City and County of Honolulu is in the process of building a $5.2 billion elevated rapid-transit line that will cover approximately 20 miles from East Kapolei to Ala Moana Center. The planned route passes through Ewa, Waipahu, Pearl City, Aiea, Kalihi, downtown Honolulu and Kakaako.

Since release of the Draft Environmental Impact Statement in November 2008, the city has made a route adjustment to bring a stop near the Honolulu International Airport into federal compliance. The proposed route is scheduled for completion by 2019. Future plans call for eventually extending the line to the University of Hawaii-Manoa and Waikiki.

The Federal Transit Administration issued a Record of Decision approving the project in January 2011. The Final Environmental Impact Statement for the project was released in June 2010. This followed adjustments to the route after the Federal Aviation Administration noted that the proposed train passed too close to the Honolulu International Airport runway. The route adjustment cleared the way for the city to submit the final Environmental Impact Statement to the Federal Transit Administration.

The city considered four options before settling on a steel-wheel-on-steel-rail system, which has received city, state and federal support. During the 2008 general election, 50.6 percent of Honolulu voters said yes to the charter amendment question: “Shall the powers, duties, and functions of the city, through its director of transportation services, include establishment of a steel wheel on steel rail transit system?”

The rail issue was so divisive during the election that more people voted against the steel-on-steel technology (140,818) than voted for anti-rail mayoral candidate, now-Councilwoman Ann Kobayashi. Kobayashi received 128,798 votes.

The project continued to have vocal detractors, however, who have called for alternatives, such as high-occupancy toll lanes with prioritized bus rapid transit or even nothing at all. Rail proponents emphasize a democratic obligation to uphold the people’s 2008 vote in support of the project.

The city’s planned route would include 21 Americans With Disabilities Act-compliant rail stations that will have escalators, elevators, stairs and platforms level with the trains’ floors. Only four stations will have substantial parking facilities, but the rail system is intended to work in concert with TheBus, allowing for easy transfer between the two.

The initial Honolulu rail line is proposed to run about 20 miles from East Kapolei, near the University of Hawaii-West Oahu campus, to Ala Moana Center. Along the way, it would pass Waipahu, Leeward Community College, Pearl City, Pearlridge, Aloha Stadium, Salt Lake, Kalihi, Honolulu Community College, downtown Honolulu and Kakaako. Extensions are also planned. One extension would go from Ala Moana Center to the University of Hawaii-Manoa campus, as well as Waikiki. Other proposed extensions would lead west through Kapolei and to Kalaeloa.

The route proposed in the Final Environmental Impact Statement released in June 2010 would require the acquisition of 160 acres. Previous estimates for acquisition ranged from 183 to 267 acres. Nearly 200 parcels would be impacted, with 40 being fully acquired. In total, 20 residences, 67 businesses and one church are slated to be displaced and relocated.

The city has notified landowners who will be impacted by the right-of-way acquisitions of their rights and has started to purchase properties. Those who refuse to sell will eventually be given 90-day notices to vacate, and will be assisted with relocations under the Federal Uniform Relocation Assistance and Real Property Acquisition Policies Act. The Federal Highway Administration has published informational brochures on acquiring real property and displacement and relocation.

The route will also have visual impacts. Some trees will have to be cut down and some ocean and mountain views will be altered by the elevated tracks. In vocal criticism of the project, the American Institutes of Architects Honolulu Chapter has posted simulations of what an elevated rail line would look like in downtown Honolulu.

The current rail proposal isn’t Oahu’s first. The idea has been considered for 40 years.

In 1967, the Oahu Transportation Study recommended a fixed guideway from Pearl City to Hawaii Kai, which then-Mayor Neal Blaisdell pursued. In the 1970s, then-Mayor Frank Fasi inherited the project and received federal money for the Honolulu Area Rapid Transit (HART) project, a fixed guideway that would connect Aloha Stadium and Kahala Mall.

However, Fasi’s defeat to Eileen Anderson in the 1980 election put his rail plans on hold. Fasi would regain the mayoral seat and, with support from Gov. John Waihee, receive congressional approval for $618 million in federal funding for HART. The plan called for a 0.5 percent general excise tax increase to cover the remainder of the project costs, but in 1992 the City Council voted down the tax increase in a 5-4 vote, killing the plan.

In 2003, rail came up again, this time as a light rail proposal from then-state Sen. President Robert Bunda. Then-Gov. Linda Lingle, a Republican, that year also proposed light rail in West Oahu and an elevated Nimitz “flyover” highway. She ended up dropping both plans due to her party’s opposition to the projects, which would have required tax increases for funding.

Two years later, however, both the city and state agreed to work together on a rail proposal. In 2005, the Legislature passed a GET surcharge, which Lingle allowed to pass into law without her signature. This time the city council approved the tax increase.

In 2008, the city, state, Federal Transit Administration (FTA) and voters approved the start of a steel-wheel-on-steel-rail system. The project’s groundbreaking was scheduled for October 2009, but was pushed back multiple times until a ceremony in early 2011 marked the start of pre-construction work.

The first segment from East Kapolei to Pearl Highlands is expected to be complete by 2015. The other segments are scheduled for subsequent completion, in three phases:

Pearl Highlands to Aloha Stadium
Aloha Stadium to Middle Street
Middle Street to Ala Moana Center
The entire project is scheduled for completion in 2019.

Honolulu’s $5.2 billion rail project will be funded by a combination of city and federal funds. The city has already set aside hundreds of millions of dollars in tax revenue for the project and in 2012 was awarded a total of $1.55 billion in federal funding.

A breakdown of the estimated costs are as follows, according to an October 2009 Federal Transit Administration memo:

• Guideway and Trackwork: $1.7 billion
• Stations, stops, terminals: $389 million
• Support facilities: $138 million
• Site work/Special conditions: $895 million
• Systems: $311 million
• Right-of-way, land, improvements: $129 million
• Vehicles: $399 million
• Professional services: $934 million
• Contingency: $184 million
• Finance charges: $290 million

The Honolulu Rail system will use steel-wheel technology. In Feburary 2008, an independent panel of transportation experts appointed by the administration and city council recommended steel-on-steel as the best long-term and most cost-effective solution. The panel cited benefits that include higher passenger capacity, better ride quality, better energy efficiency and lower noise and air-quality impacts.

The panel had compared the steel-wheel on steel-track system to rubber tire on concrete, monorail and magnetic levitation technology.

The decision to move to rail came just a couple years after the city abandoned plans for a bus rapid transit system in urban Honolulu, due in part to concerns that dedicated bus lanes would create more congestion rather than help it. The city considered other alternatives, such as elevated high-occupancy toll roads, as well.

The Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the Honolulu rail project looked at the traffic corridor from Kapolei to Manoa and drew conclusions based on more residents and job sites moving toward West Oahu through 2030.

More than 60 percent of Oahu’s population and 80 percent of its employment is located in the designated transit corridor. The planning documents looked at a narrow 23-mile strip bounded by the Waianae and Koolau mountain ranges and the Pacific Ocean. The corridor includes most of West Oahu, including many new and upcoming suburban developments and the “second city” of Kapolei, as well as the business district and Waikiki.

By 2030, the population living in the area is expected to increase to 69 percent, along with 84 percent of jobs. If those projections are correct, along with the expectation that 95,000 commuters will ride a train on a daily basis, the city predicts future traffic congestion will be reduced versus if the system is not built.


In 2007, about 73 percent of more than 2 million daily trips on Oahu originated between Kapolei and Waikiki, including about 350,000 trips during peak morning travel times. Under the proposed system, trains will hold more than 300 passengers, which planners say is the equivalent of more than 200 cars, with trains coming every three minutes during rush hour.

If the train ridership is as robust as the city hopes, it could mean 30,000 fewer cars on the road each day. According to the Draft Environmental Impact Statement, this could improve traffic congestion and parking shortages for others commuting to work in downtown Honolulu, Kakaako or the Ala Moana area, even those coming from areas not served by the rail system.

While there is skepticism among opponents about whether the ridership projections will be realized, the city hopes to have similar results to smaller communities, as well as less densely populated cities with successful steel-wheel transit systems, including Portland, Seattle, San Francisco and Los Angeles.

Although 2010 data shows declining ridership in public transportation nationwide, the American Public Transportation Association reported before the economic downturn that public transportation use had been on the rise in several cities, with increased ridership of 5 percent to 43 percent within a one-year time frame.

Honolulu’s ridership numbers will likely depend on how easy the rail system will be to use and how much it reduces commute times. The city so far has offered little data to make comparisons between the length of a rail commute and driving in rush hour. The Draft EIS offered only two comparisons between 2007 rush hour drive times and projected 2030 transit travel times:

• Waianae to UH-Manoa: 128 minutes by car vs. 91-93 minutes by train
• Kapolei to Ala Moana Center: 101 minutes by car vs. 57-59 minutes by train

Impact on Historic Sites

The city has said seven historic sites will face negative impacts, but the Historic Hawaii Foundation believes at least 33 historic properties, including three historic districts, will be adversely affected by the planned rail route.

Adverse effects, according to the foundation’s definition, include “demolition, physical occupation of a portion of the site or having an impact on the site’s setting, context, feeling or association.” Another 50 are in the area of potential effect.

Almost Three-Quarters Of Voters Want To Strengthen Police Panel PF Bentley/Civil Beat

Almost Three-Quarters Of Voters Want To Strengthen Police Panel

In other issues raised by charter amendments, they aren’t hot on extending term limits or dedicating a portion of property taxes to the zoo.

Honolulu Voters Don’t Love Rail, But They Still Want The Job Done Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Honolulu Voters Don’t Love Rail, But They Still Want The Job Done

Supporters of building the train’s route all the way to Ala Moana Center far outnumber people who want to cut the rail line short.

Djou: No Tax Increase For Honolulu Rail — Yet Ronen Zilberman/Civil Beat

Djou: No Tax Increase For Honolulu Rail — Yet

The mayoral challenger says he wants to explore other options before considering whether to extend the tax that goes to pay for rail.
Secret No More: Rail Subcontractors Received $235M In One Year Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Secret No More: Rail Subcontractors Received $235M In One Year

For years, HART officials refused to release how much money subcontractors were being paid on the biggest infrastructure project in state history. Until now.
Grabauskas Resigns As HART Executive Director Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Grabauskas Resigns As HART Executive Director

UPDATED: The CEO of the agency overseeing Honolulu's beleaguered rail project steps down after an executive session of the HART board.
Caldwell, Djou Headed For Runoff In Honolulu Mayor’s Race Cory Lum/Civil Beat

Caldwell, Djou Headed For Runoff In Honolulu Mayor’s Race

The mayor barely outpolled his primary challenger, but neither candidate garnered a majority of the vote, so they both advance.
Take A Ride On The Honolulu Rail Route Alternatives Anthony Quintano / Civil Beat

Take A Ride On The Honolulu Rail Route Alternatives

There's more than one way to get from Kapolei to Ala Moana. With the click of your mouse, you can check out the various options.
How Will Honolulu’s Next Mayor Pay To Finish The Rail Project? Cory Lum/Civil Beat

How Will Honolulu’s Next Mayor Pay To Finish The Rail Project?

UPDATED: Kirk Caldwell, Peter Carlisle and Charles Djou have ideas for completing the rail line but no one is sure where the money will actually come from.
Ad Watch: Carlisle Says You Can Trust Him To Build Rail Right Carlisle for Mayor

Ad Watch: Carlisle Says You Can Trust Him To Build Rail Right

The former Honolulu mayor's first TV ad is about delivering on promises — and showcasing a certain Hawaii political legend.
As Caldwell And Djou Sharpen Attacks, Carlisle Goes For Laughs Cory Lum/Civil Beat

As Caldwell And Djou Sharpen Attacks, Carlisle Goes For Laughs

Unlike his opponents, the former mayor of Honolulu doesn't seem inclined to confront the other candidates.

FTA Gives Honolulu More Time For Rail Plan Anthony Quintano / Civil Beat

FTA Gives Honolulu More Time For Rail Plan

UPDATED: But with a new deadline set at year's end, the feds balked at giving the city as much time as it wanted to figure out what's next.

October 2016

Friday, October 21

Almost Three-Quarters Of Voters Want To Strengthen Police Panel

Thursday, October 20

Honolulu Voters Don’t Love Rail, But They Still Want The Job Done

Wednesday, October 12

Cartoonist Vs. The Rail

August 2016

Wednesday, August 31

Djou: No Tax Increase For Honolulu Rail — Yet

Friday, August 26

Secret No More: Rail Subcontractors Received $235M In One Year

Thursday, August 18

Grabauskas Resigns As HART Executive Director

Saturday, August 13

Caldwell, Djou Headed For Runoff In Honolulu Mayor’s Race

Friday, August 12

Take A Ride On The Honolulu Rail Route Alternatives

Wednesday, August 10

How Will Honolulu’s Next Mayor Pay To Finish The Rail Project?

Tuesday, August 2

Ad Watch: Carlisle Says You Can Trust Him To Build Rail Right

July 2016

Tuesday, July 26

As Caldwell And Djou Sharpen Attacks, Carlisle Goes For Laughs

Friday, July 22

FTA Gives Honolulu More Time For Rail Plan

Caldwell Ad ‘Fact-Checks’ Djou on Rail, Homelessness

Tuesday, July 19

HART Signs $875M Contract To Build Rail To Middle Street

Thursday, July 14

Djou’s First TV Ad Attacks Mayor Caldwell As Untrustworthy

Wednesday, July 6

New Honolulu Rail Board Member Climbs Aboard With Council Approval

June 2016

Tuesday, June 28

In Latest Campaign Spot, Caldwell Accentuates The Positive

Thursday, June 16

Hopelessly Over-Budget, Rail Should Stop At Middle Street, Mayor Says

Thursday, June 2

Honolulu Charter Commission Sees ‘Urgent’ Need For Rail Changes

May 2016

Tuesday, May 24

HART Has Bigger Problems Than Utilities

Tuesday, May 17

Does Colbert Matsumoto Have A Conflict Of Interest With Rail?

Monday, May 16

Future of Honolulu Rail Uncertain After Feds Say It Might Cost $8.1B

Friday, May 13

Honolulu Rail Price Estimate Jumps To $6.9B

Carlisle Wants To Be Mayor Of Honolulu, Again

Thursday, May 5

Rail Contractor Gets ‘Public Apology’ After Bitter Lawsuit Ends

Wednesday, May 4

Caldwell: ‘I Want To Keep This Job’

April 2016

Thursday, April 28

‘Final’ Price Tag For Rail Not Expected Until Next Year

Thursday, April 21

Hanabusa Takes Over As Chairwoman Of Honolulu Rail Board

Wednesday, April 20

Caldwell Taps Insurance Exec For HART

Tuesday, April 19

Honolulu Rail Project Expected To Cost The DOE Millions For New Schools

Martin Pulls Papers For Mayoral Bid

Friday, April 15

HART Continues Its Assault On Audit That Criticizes Rail Project

Thursday, April 14

Grabauskas: Honolulu Rail Audit ‘A Mess’

Monday, April 11

HART Board Chairman Resigns Amid Questions About Rail Cost Overruns

February 2016

Thursday, February 25

Rail Vote Suit Dismissed, Appeal Likely

Monday, February 1

Caldwell Signs Honolulu Rail Tax Extension

January 2016

Wednesday, January 27

Honolulu City Council Approves Rail Tax Extension

Wednesday, January 13

Tax Extension Revenue For Honolulu Rail Chugs Ahead

Tuesday, January 12

Five Unanswered Questions About Honolulu’s $6.6 Billion Rail Project

December 2015

Tuesday, December 22

HART OKs New Contract For Rail Stations

What Could $1.5 Billion Buy You (Besides More Of The Rail Project)?

Wednesday, December 9

City Council Considers Killing Proposed Cap On Honolulu Rail Tax

Friday, December 4

When Half A Train Is Better Than None

November 2015

Monday, November 23

Under The Microscope: Honolulu Included In Federal Rail Audit

Wednesday, November 18

Honolulu Rail Tax Extension Gets Preliminary OK

Tuesday, November 17

HART Finds Savings With Latest Honolulu Rail Bids

Monday, November 16

Caldwell: Honolulu Would Be ‘Lolo’ To Imperil Its Federal Funds for Rail

Friday, November 13

Caldwell: Feds Withholding Honolulu Rail Funds Until Council Acts

Thursday, November 12

Is Honolulu Rail Project’s Future At Stake In Dispute Over Council’s Budget Role?

October 2015

Wednesday, October 21

City Budget Committee Mulls Tougher Line, Possible Cap on Rail Spending

Honolulu Rail’s Big Cash Problem

Thursday, October 15

HART Board Waiting on Honolulu City Council for Rail Cash

September 2015

Friday, September 11

Honolulu Rail Consultant Under Ethics Probe for Boat Trip with Contractor

August 2015

Thursday, August 20

Key Rail Contractor Tangled Up in Fraud Allegations in Hawaii Courts

June 2015

Thursday, June 11

Rail Operating Costs: A Looming Financial Crisis That Will Cost Taxpayers Billions

Monday, June 1

Hanabusa Picked to Help Monitor Honolulu Rail Project

May 2015

Wednesday, May 13

Inside the Rail Checkbook: More than $1 Billion Spent but Few Details to Go Along With It

Tuesday, May 5

Honolulu Rail Tax Extension Clears the Legislature

Council Chair: No ‘Easy Sell’ for Honolulu Rail Tax

April 2015

Wednesday, April 29

Deal on Honolulu Rail Tax Remains Up in the Air

Monday, April 27

Roads for Rail? Hawaii Senators Pitch New Tax Idea

Thursday, April 23

Work on Rail Tax Compromise Moves Behind Closed Doors

Wednesday, April 22

Civil Beat Poll: Most Voters Oppose Honolulu Rail Tax Extension

Monday, April 13

Secret Subcontractors: What Honolulu Rail Officials Aren’t Telling You

Tuesday, April 7

Senators Give Honolulu Rail ‘A Great Deal of Opportunity’

Monday, April 6

Is Ige On Board With Extending Honolulu Rail Tax?

Wednesday, April 1

Lawmaker Frustration Leads to New Call for Rail Audit

March 2015

Monday, March 30

Railing Against Honolulu’s $6 Billion Rail Project

Lawmakers to Hold Community Town Hall Meeting on Rail

Honolulu Rail: Big Questions Demand a Legislative Special Session

Wednesday, March 25

Frequent Fliers: Nearly $500K Spent on Rail Travel to Date

Thursday, March 19

Honolulu Rail Tax: How Long Will It Go?

Wednesday, March 4

Hawaii Legislature: Not So Fast on More Taxes for Rail

Math Problem: Does Honolulu Rail GET Shortfall Really Add Up?

Tuesday, March 3

Honolulu Rail Construction Proposals Millions Higher Than Expected

February 2015

Tuesday, February 24

Behind Closed Doors: Honolulu Rail Officials Planned Political Strategy in Executive Session

Thursday, February 19

Schatz: Protecting Federal Money for Rail a Top Priority

Thursday, February 12

Honolulu Rail Tax Alive, But Ige Still Has Questions

Wednesday, February 11

HART: Rail Could Run Out of Cash By This Summer

Monday, February 2

Large Rail Contractors Dump $1.3 Million into Local Campaign Coffers

January 2015

Friday, January 30

At Least $1.25B Has Been Spent on Rail So Far, But Where Has All the Money Gone?

Thursday, January 29

What Can We Do About the Rail? Nothing. Tackle Traffic Congestion!

Monday, January 26

State Lawmakers Lambaste Mayor Over Request to Extend Rail Tax

Thursday, January 22

Honolulu Rail Deficit Could Be Closer to $1 Billion

October 2014

Friday, October 3

How Safe Has the Honolulu Rail Project Been?

September 2014

Wednesday, September 10

Feds: ‘Aggressive Cost Containment’ Needed for Rail Project

Tuesday, September 9

High Construction Costs Could Delay Honolulu Rail Opening

May 2014

Saturday, May 10

Honolulu Rail Takes Shape, City Prepares for Development Boom

Tuesday, May 6

Companies Jockey for $1 Billion Worth of Honolulu Rail Contracts

March 2014

Saturday, March 15

Low Cash Flow Leads Rail Authority to Ask Honolulu for $1.5 Billion Loan

February 2014

Wednesday, February 19

Hele On: Courts Rule in Favor of Honolulu Rail

December 2013

Friday, December 27

Urban High: Rail Lets Honolulu Grow Up

Tuesday, December 17

Honolulu Rail Audit: Too Many Consultants, Too Little Accountability

Saturday, December 7

Honolulu Rail Exec Had Been VP at Firm That Just Won New Rail Contract

November 2013

Wednesday, November 27

New Engineer Takes Over Honolulu Rail Project

October 2013

Wednesday, October 9

Tunnel Vision? Not When It Comes to Honolulu’s High Stakes Rail Project

September 2013

Thursday, September 5

Honolulu Rail’s New $27 Million Safety Feature to Avert Track Fatalities

July 2013

Monday, July 15

Honolulu Rail: Where Are We Now?

June 2013

Thursday, June 20

Honolulu Council Begging for Sea Level Rise Lawsuits

Tuesday, June 18

Inouye’s Chief of Staff Takes Over Honolulu Rail Advocacy Group

April 2013

Friday, April 12

Honolulu Rail CEO Explains Why He Deserves a $35,000 Bonus

Thursday, April 4

Protecting the Integrity of the Historic Preservation Review Process

January 2013

Thursday, January 10

Former Hawaii Gov. Cayetano Says He’ll Appeal Rail Ruling

December 2012

Friday, December 28

Court Ruling Keeps City Rail Project On Track, Honolulu Mayor Says

Thursday, December 13

$1.55 Billion Federal Rail Grant On The Line In Federal Case

November 2012

Monday, November 19

FTA Says It Will Sign $1.55 Billion Deal For Honolulu Rail Project

Saturday, November 3

My Way Or The Highway: A Newcomer’s View Of The Honolulu Rail Debate

Friday, November 2

Federal Judge Issues Split Decision On Honolulu Rail Environmental Suit

October 2012

Monday, October 29

Civil Beat Poll – Cayetano Peaks, Caldwell Surges

Friday, October 26

Political Fight For Oahu’s GET Heats Up

Wednesday, October 10

Will A New Law Mean Federal Funding for Honolulu BRT?

Tuesday, October 9

More Iwi Discovered Along Honolulu Rail Route

Thursday, October 4

Honolulu Mayoral Debate: Caldwell Takes Some Swings

Wednesday, October 3

$1.5 Billion Budget for Cayetano’s Honolulu Traffic Proposal

Monday, October 1

Civil Beat Poll – Unwavering Rail Opposition Gives Cayetano Lead

September 2012

Thursday, September 27

Honolulu District 6 Hopefuls Vow To Repair And Rehabilitate

Friday, September 21

Honolulu Rail Delegation Seeks To Smooth Concerns In D.C.

Thursday, September 20

Cayetano: Bus Rapid Transit ‘Sweeping the Country’

Caldwell: Honolulu On Cutting Edge Of Driverless Rail Systems

Wednesday, September 12

Where Is Honolulu Rail’s Federal Funding?

Saturday, September 8

Ben and Kirk Talk Journalism And, Of Course, Politics

Thursday, September 6

Honolulu to Supreme Court: Keep Rail Construction Alive

August 2012

Friday, August 31

The Rail Election

Wednesday, August 29

Surf and Turf: An Analogy Between Hawaii Superferry and Honolulu Rail

Tuesday, August 28

Honolulu Rail Construction Stopped, Now What?

Wednesday, August 22

Judge’s Decision Looms Over Honolulu Rail

Saturday, August 18

At Last, Rail Lawsuit Is Getting Its Day in Court

July 2012

Thursday, July 26

Accused of Corruption, Mitsunagas Punch Back With Radio Ads

Cayetano: 2 in 100 Will Ride Rail, Half Will Be Bus Riders

Wednesday, July 11

Former Campaign Chief In Town To Back Cayetano

Tuesday, July 3

Honolulu Council Member Slapped with Record $6,500 Ethics Fine

June 2012

Thursday, June 28

Updated Rail Finance Plan Part of Formal Federal Funding Request

Tuesday, June 26

Honolulu Council Members Push for Audits of HART, Sewer

Monday, June 18

U.S. House Subcommittee Slices Money for Rail

Monday, June 11

Civil Beat Poll – Cayetano’s Grip On Honolulu Mayor’s Race Is Slipping

Thursday, June 7

Race To The Finish For Federal Rail Money

Filipino PR Flap Enflames Rail Talks

Saturday, June 2

Kobayashi: Voters in 2008 Didn’t Approve Current Rail Project

May 2012

Wednesday, May 30

Bus Rapid Transit: The Devil’s in the Details, But What Are They?

Friday, May 25

Supreme Court: Can Rail Avoid Hawaiian Burials?

Thursday, May 24

Pro-Rail Union Group Ups Ante Against Cayetano

Wednesday, May 23

Moderate Caldwell Says ‘Build Rail Better’

Friday, May 18

Judge Narrows Case in Honolulu Rail Lawsuit

Thursday, May 10

Dear Dan: Cayetano’s Email to Inouye

Tuesday, May 8

Grabauskas: Debt Ate 30% of Boston Transit Budget

April 2012

Tuesday, April 24

New Honolulu Rail Chief Talks a Good Game

Friday, April 13

New Rail Chief Sees Himself as Intermediary Between Council, Feds

Honolulu Council Keeps Rail Budget Intact

Thursday, April 12

Inouye: The Only Thing That Will Stop Rail is World War III

Saturday, April 7

Council Support Wavers As Key Rail Vote Looms

March 2012

Wednesday, March 28

Is Honolulu Rail Debt Causing Budget Cuts?

Monday, March 26

Is It ‘Reckless’ To Build Honolulu Rail Before Feds Commit Funds?

Friday, March 23

Rail Construction End Of Long Line for Permits

Monday, March 19

Cayetano’s Transit Plan Mirrors Harris’ in 2000

Wednesday, March 7

Are Honolulu Rail Backers’ New Radio Ads Accurate?

Tuesday, March 6

Lacking Support, Can Rail Backers Turn The Tide?

Thursday, March 1

Civil Beat Poll – Majority of Honolulu Voters Don’t Buy Rail Congestion Argument

Civil Beat Poll – 44% of Honolulu Voters Perceive Bias in Rail Coverage

Civil Beat Poll – Honolulu Rail Authority Hasn’t Won Voters’ Confidence

Civil Beat Poll – Honolulu Voters Oppose Rail Project

Grabauskas OK’d As Rail Chief Despite Soft Spot For Toru Hamayasu

February 2012

Wednesday, February 29

Off the Beat: What About the Mayor’s Calls for Transparency?

Monday, February 27

New Honolulu Rail Chief Was Late, Over Budget on His Biggest Project

Friday, February 24

HART Taps New Rail Chief: Grabauskas from Boston

Mayor Peter Carlisle’s Tale of Two Honolulus

Thursday, February 23

Carlisle on Rail Examined

Carlisle on Rail: ‘We Need to Keep Moving Forward’

Wednesday, February 22

Rail Will Do Nothing to Reduce Traffic Overload on Congested Highways

Thursday, February 16

Time to Get Serious About Rail Conversation

Tuesday, February 14

FTA Watching Opponents, Wants $250M for Honolulu Rail

Friday, February 10

Just How Deep Will Honolulu Rail’s Debt Be?

Thursday, February 9

Carlisle: Rail Will Take 40,000 Cars Off The Road

Tuesday, February 7

Sen. Inouye Can’t See the Forest When it Comes to Rail

Monday, February 6

Feds Green Light Honolulu Rail Construction

Profs Like Cayetano On Rail, But Not Ready To ‘Forgive and Forget’?

Thursday, February 2

Does Line-of-Credit Rail Plan Leave Honolulu Taxpayers on Hook?

January 2012

Friday, January 27

Off The Beat: So Much For Independent Rail

Money In The Bank Or ‘Bells and Whistles’ If Honolulu Rail Costs Less?

Emergency Rail Plan: Taxpayers Have Our Back

Saturday, January 21

10 Must Read Stories From The Week Of Jan. 16 – 20

Friday, January 20

Cayetano: Rail A Wall of Concrete Snaking Along Honolulu’s Waterfront

Thursday, January 19

Cayetano: I’m Not a One-Issue Anti-Rail Candidate

Wednesday, January 18

Honolulu Officials Unlikely To Try To Extend Rail Tax

What Does the FTA Want From Honolulu Rail?

Saturday, January 14

Inside Honolulu — Government, Politics and Issues — Jan. 16-22

10 Must Read Stories From The Week Of Jan. 9 – 13

Wednesday, January 11

Honolulu Facing Five Major Issues In 2012

Could Honolulu’s Mayor Stop Rail Project?

Tuesday, January 10

Judge: Civil Beat Can Blog Honolulu Rail Lawsuit

Saturday, January 7

Inside Honolulu — Government, Politics and Issues — Jan. 9-15

Friday, January 6

‘Lot of Work To Do’ Before Feds Fund Honolulu Rail

Thursday, January 5

Honolulu to Feds: OK Rail Work Or Costs Rise $100M

Wednesday, January 4

Faith, Union Groups Seek Pro-Rail Spot in Lawsuit

December 2011

Saturday, December 31

Inside Honolulu – Government, Politics and Issues – Jan. 2-8

Friday, December 30

Feds OK Final Rail Design Work, But Demand Stronger Financial Plan

Carrie Okinaga’s New Gig: First Hawaiian Lawyer

Saturday, December 24

2011 Year in Review — Honolulu

Friday, December 23

Inside Honolulu – Government, Politics and Issues – Dec. 26-Jan. 1

Can Pro-Business Charity Pay For Rail Lawsuit?

Friday, December 16

Inside Honolulu – Government, Politics and Issues – Dec. 19-Dec. 25

Saturday, December 3

Inside Honolulu – Government, Politics and Issues – Dec. 5-Dec. 11

Thursday, December 1

Inouye Says He’s a ‘Realist’ About Rail Project

After Years of Dissent, Rail Critics Get Day In Court

November 2011

Wednesday, November 30

Rail to ‘Plow Forward’ With Or Without Federal Money

Tuesday, November 29

Clock Ticking on $510M in Honolulu Rail Funding

HART Signs $1.4 Billion Contract With Ansaldo

Saturday, November 26

What Convinced Honolulu Rail Officials That Ansaldo Could Do The Job?

Friday, November 25

Ansaldo CEO Satisfies Honolulu Rail Board

Wednesday, November 23

Influential Environmental Group Opposes Honolulu Rail Project

Thursday, November 17

HART Will Delay Ansaldo Contract

October 2011

Wednesday, October 26

Civil Beat’s News Coverage of Rail is Substandard

Tuesday, October 25

‘Intermodal Pete’ and the Tale of Two Bus Stations

Saturday, October 22

Ansaldo, State Reach Deal On Licensing Violation

Rail Shifted From Airport, But Strip Club Stays

Thursday, October 20

Rail at the Airport, Part 3: How Much Will It Cost?

Rail at the Airport, Part 2: Who Was Responsible?

Rail at the Airport, Part 1: What Happened?

Rail At The Airport: Investigation In 3 Parts

Wednesday, October 19

Rail Operating Costs Worry Honolulu Council Members

Hawaii Officials Merrily Celebrate Rail in D.C.

Tuesday, October 18

When Leases End, Lessors Could Gain From Rail

Thursday, October 13

HART: Full Steam Ahead For Ansaldo Rail Contract

Civil Beat Corrects Articles on Rail Land Ownership

Capitol Watch: Oct. 13

Friday, October 7

Rail = Jobs

Rail Price Drops Again In New Draft Financial Plan

Honolulu Rail Project