Think About It: Rail-ing Cry - KFVE, K5-Hawaii News Now, Local Programming

March 27, 2012

Think About It: Rail-ing Cry

The Honolulu City Council is looking to approve a measure that would allow for general obligation bonds for the transit project. At the same time, the Council is asking the city lawyers what would happen if the bond measure is approved, but then the Council decides not to float the bonds later. The only thing then floating would be the unbalanced budget. Council members apparently are unsure if they are getting the right data with guarded guarantees. They're not even sure if the marketing and promotion surrounding rail is accurate and fair.

And then there is the positioning statement that we should start installing deep, thick, big pillars now, because it will cost only half as much than if installation were to occur later, and even if, for some reason, the pillars have to come crumbling down due to some problem getting this whole rail thing accomplished, well, it's still much cheaper than waiting to build later. 50% cheaper? Some wonder if this isn't just more obfuscation amid growing concerns. You can just see it now, price issues arise in three years, and some project official states, "yes, but we've already got construction started, so we might as well just finish this thing."

And then there's the hard-to-fathom theory that if construction starts, but we then find out that federal funding is not there down the road, this rail system could end up serving only those travelling between Kapolei and Pearl City, which obviously wouldn't fulfill the needs of almost all of the riders. And in case you haven't checked the map- if you get on board in Kapolei and plan to go to Ala Moana Center, there are 19 stops along the way. Again we see lots of questions about this possible solution to a very real problem that will only get worse in the coming decade. Yet even the officials involved aren't sure about the answers they're getting. Think about it…


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