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Rail

What the Honolulu rail has taught us

Photo by Charley Myers After years of delay, the Honolulu rail is finally open. Well, partly anyway. The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reports that more than 71,000 people took advantage of the five days of free rides that marked the opening of the first 11 miles of the rail, officially named Skyline.

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Kent, Hamada explore the many ways lawmakers waste money

Housing, the Honolulu rail, the Aloha Stadium, homelessness and the 64% pay raise for Honolulu City Council members.  Those were some of the topics Institute Executive Vice President Joe Kent talked about during his latest visit with radio host Rick Hamada on News Radio 830 KHVH. Regarding the rail, Kent

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‘If you build it, make sure you have all your money first’

Honolulu’s rail project has faced problems for years — including never-ending delays and its ever-ballooning multibillion-dollar price tag. But a new consequence seems to have emerged: The city recently saw its bond rating downgraded by one of the country’s major bond-rating agencies. Speaking on Sunday with H. Hawaii Media radio

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Rail debt gimmick comes back to bite Honolulu taxpayers

The following commentary was originally published in Honolulu Civil Beat on Friday, April 7, 2023. _____________ In 2012, Honolulu officials thought they could protect the county’s credit rating by not counting bond issues for the Honolulu rail in the county’s “debt affordability limit.” But they were wrong. In early February,

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How Hawaii can improve its transportation systems

Baruch Feigenbaum pulled no punches on Tuesday when discussing reforms that might solve some of Hawaii’s transportation challenges. Feigenbaum, senior managing director of transportation policy at the Reason Foundation, told host Keli’i Akina on the latest “Hawaii Together” program on ThinkTech Hawaii that, “sadly, just about everyone in transportation is

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Time to get real about rail

Photo by Charley Myers Boundless optimism may be a great trait in a friend, but it’s not what you need when you’re dealing with billion-dollar projects and long-term cost projections. From the beginning, the folks in charge of the Honolulu rail project have been relentlessly sunny in their projections. It

Read More →

Institute warns federal agency about HART’s dubious rail recovery plan

The transit agency is trying to squeeze $744 million more from the FTA so it can finish its over-budget, behind-schedule project The Grassroot Institute of Hawaii submitted a letter this week to the Federal Transit Administration urging it to view with “extreme skepticism” the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation’s 2022 Recovery Plan.

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Why Panos Prevedouros left Hawaii

The state is at risk of a major natural catastrophe, he says, and its “suicidal” energy policy will just make everything worse Hawaii’s policy mandate to go to 100% renewable energy is nothing short of suicidal. That was the message of Panos Prevedouros, former chairman of the University of Hawaii civil

Read More →

Questions persist about viability of Honolulu rail

Photo by Charley Myers At this point, the one thing we can rely on concerning the Honolulu rail project is the long list of unanswered questions. Among them: >> How much will it really cost? >> How will we pay for its future operations and maintenance? >> Will it ever

Read More →

Major questions still bedevil Honolulu rail

So what’s going on with the Honolulu rail, the construction of which began in 2012? It is over budget and behind schedule, barely two-thirds completed, threatening major havoc as its construction nears the city center, unlikely to meet its latest cost projections and time tables, and its future funding sources

Read More →

What the Honolulu rail has taught us

Photo by Charley Myers After years of delay, the Honolulu rail is finally open. Well, partly anyway. The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reports that more than 71,000 people took advantage of the five days of free rides that marked the opening of the first 11 miles of the rail, officially named Skyline.

Read More →

Kent, Hamada explore the many ways lawmakers waste money

Housing, the Honolulu rail, the Aloha Stadium, homelessness and the 64% pay raise for Honolulu City Council members.  Those were some of the topics Institute Executive Vice President Joe Kent talked about during his latest visit with radio host Rick Hamada on News Radio 830 KHVH. Regarding the rail, Kent

Read More →

‘If you build it, make sure you have all your money first’

Honolulu’s rail project has faced problems for years — including never-ending delays and its ever-ballooning multibillion-dollar price tag. But a new consequence seems to have emerged: The city recently saw its bond rating downgraded by one of the country’s major bond-rating agencies. Speaking on Sunday with H. Hawaii Media radio

Read More →

Rail debt gimmick comes back to bite Honolulu taxpayers

The following commentary was originally published in Honolulu Civil Beat on Friday, April 7, 2023. _____________ In 2012, Honolulu officials thought they could protect the county’s credit rating by not counting bond issues for the Honolulu rail in the county’s “debt affordability limit.” But they were wrong. In early February,

Read More →

How Hawaii can improve its transportation systems

Baruch Feigenbaum pulled no punches on Tuesday when discussing reforms that might solve some of Hawaii’s transportation challenges. Feigenbaum, senior managing director of transportation policy at the Reason Foundation, told host Keli’i Akina on the latest “Hawaii Together” program on ThinkTech Hawaii that, “sadly, just about everyone in transportation is

Read More →

Time to get real about rail

Photo by Charley Myers Boundless optimism may be a great trait in a friend, but it’s not what you need when you’re dealing with billion-dollar projects and long-term cost projections. From the beginning, the folks in charge of the Honolulu rail project have been relentlessly sunny in their projections. It

Read More →

Institute warns federal agency about HART’s dubious rail recovery plan

The transit agency is trying to squeeze $744 million more from the FTA so it can finish its over-budget, behind-schedule project The Grassroot Institute of Hawaii submitted a letter this week to the Federal Transit Administration urging it to view with “extreme skepticism” the Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation’s 2022 Recovery Plan.

Read More →

Why Panos Prevedouros left Hawaii

The state is at risk of a major natural catastrophe, he says, and its “suicidal” energy policy will just make everything worse Hawaii’s policy mandate to go to 100% renewable energy is nothing short of suicidal. That was the message of Panos Prevedouros, former chairman of the University of Hawaii civil

Read More →

Questions persist about viability of Honolulu rail

Photo by Charley Myers At this point, the one thing we can rely on concerning the Honolulu rail project is the long list of unanswered questions. Among them: >> How much will it really cost? >> How will we pay for its future operations and maintenance? >> Will it ever

Read More →

Major questions still bedevil Honolulu rail

So what’s going on with the Honolulu rail, the construction of which began in 2012? It is over budget and behind schedule, barely two-thirds completed, threatening major havoc as its construction nears the city center, unlikely to meet its latest cost projections and time tables, and its future funding sources

Read More →