Think About It: Rail, Rail, The Gang's All Here - KFVE, K5-Hawaii News, Weather and Sports

October 22, 2015

Think About It: Rail, Rail, The Gang's All Here

And the latest projection for rail is now a final cost that's 25% above original projections for a project that will apparently be open to the public about 15-months or so later than was originally laid out. With bids still coming in and further issues undoubtedly still to pop up over the next five-years, does anyone seriously think we've heard the last of the growing costs for rail?

But hey, what's $6.6-billion vs. $5.3-billion among friends?  And we are all friends here, since we'll all be paying the additional costs through an excise tax surcharge that has been extended for a half-decade, but will probably last until the next appearance of Halley's Comet… in 2061.  I think that consumers understand that this is a major, evolving project with all kinds of legal pitfalls, unplanned hiccups and technical holdups. And the cost of construction has understandably gone up drastically now that the building economy has improved and the industry locally is busy on numerous projects. But no one thought of this stuff early on?

Much like Tom Hanks' befuddled homeowner in "The Money Pit", a great, light comedic movie by the way, we just keep seeing increased costs incurred for this and that, as well as an increase in daily traffic and business consternation in construction areas. So can we get a realistic rail cost estimate now that work has been going on in earnest for a few years and strategies are in place for a final peg to be nailed in 2021? As the people are paying for it and will be using it, is that too much to ask in late-2015? Think about it?

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