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Old March 13th, 2008, 09:48 PM   #21
Electrify
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Panel members rejected a monorail or magnetic levitation system, saying those technologies are not as common and have not been proved to work in other urban areas.
Won't speak for Maglev since its strengths really are in long distance commuting, but monorail IS proven at being just as efficient as rail, all while being much safer. It would have been an excellent choice too since the system is planned to be elevated for virtually its entire run.

To hell with the noise, I'd be more concerned with how much sky the elevated light rail lines will block out...
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Old March 14th, 2008, 05:00 AM   #22
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Won't speak for Maglev since its strengths really are in long distance commuting, but monorail IS proven at being just as efficient as rail, all while being much safer. It would have been an excellent choice too since the system is planned to be elevated for virtually its entire run.

To hell with the noise, I'd be more concerned with how much sky the elevated light rail lines will block out...
The whole panel of experts process seems to have been a joke given that the panel made a recommendation based on cost yet they didn't have any actual cost data. The following is a snip from the Honolulu Advertiser article < http://www.honoluluadvertiser.com/ap...62/1001/NEWS01 > :

"...

The lack of detailed cost information raised concern among some council members.

"By their own admission (panelists) did not get any information on costs from most of the respondents to the (request for information)," said council Chairwoman Barbara Marshall, during a recent hearing. "I think that's critical.

"The whole idea here was that we were supposed to select a system based on cost efficiency."

..."
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Old March 22nd, 2008, 02:50 AM   #23
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http://www.honoluluadvertiser.com/ap...001/BREAKING01

Updated at 10:42 p.m., Wednesday, March 19, 2008
Council revives non-steel transit options

By Sean Hao
Advertiser Staff Writer

The City Council decided tonight to reconsider whether Honolulu's planned $3.7 billion mass transit system will use rubber wheels, steel wheels or no wheels.

The move comes about a month after a council committee had endorsed steel wheels on steel rail as the preferred technology.

The City Council voted unanimously to consider magnetic levitation, rubber on concrete and steel technology for the project.

The change follows concern that steel technology could cause noise problems for neighbors of the elevated commuter rail and possibly hurt property values.

By keeping the other technology options alive, "We will be able to look further (into) the implication of this technology," said Councilman Romy Cachola. "What it does is (allow us to see if) there is a better technology that works to address noise better, or (that's) not going to negatively impact property values."

Mayor Mufi Hannemann said while he was pleased the council voted 9-0 to advance the project, he was disappointed that it has not settled on a single technology.

"Tonight's vote means that rail is still moving forward," he said in a news release. "But it is a shame that the council could not support the process it voted to create." Hannemann said he is confident steel technology will ultimately be chosen, and pointed out that 56 of 62 federally funded major transit projects since 1992 use steel wheels on steel tracks.

Steel wheel and rail was recommended by a council-appointed panel for its reliability, capability, cost and rider comfort. However, four of five panelists who made the recommendation in February also rated steel technology as the noisiest alternative compared with rubber on concrete, magnetic levitation and monorail technologies.

Reach Sean Hao at [email protected].
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Old April 8th, 2008, 06:43 PM   #24
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Transit option: back to steel-on-steel
4 April 2008

HONOLULU (AP) - The Honolulu City Council is once again focused on a steel-on-steel mass transit system.

The council's Transportation Committee has reversed an earlier decision to keep other options alive.

Members voted 4-1 on Thursday to eliminate rubber tire or magnetic levitation systems from consideration.

The new decision supports the conclusions of an independent panel that a steel rail system would be the best for the rapid transit system that will carry passengers from Kapolei to Ala Moana.

The full city council is expected to vote on the proposal April 16.

Mayor Mufi Hannemann supports the idea of steel rail and has stressed the need to settle on a system right away.
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Old May 28th, 2008, 02:17 PM   #25
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Planes, Trains and Automobiles to Merge at Honolulu Airport
Updated: May 24, 2008 03:40 PM

HONOLULU (KHNL) -- The City and County of Honolulu's rail plan makes a pit stop at one of the busiest places on Oahu. The 20-mile route from East Kapolei all the way down to Ala Moana Center would now extend its service to Honolulu International Airport. That's something many people said they wanted all along.

The extension would begin at Middle Street and go to the airport. It has a price tag of $350 million, but the mayor says it's a necessary stop that would be used by those who live here and those who visit Oahu.

Seeing a light rail system at the airport could be as common as seeing planes, if Mayor Mufi Hannemann has his way.

"It's a no brainer when you consider 7,000 people are employed at the airport," said Hannemann. "It's a no brainer when 2,500 people ride the bus daily. It's a no brainer when you consider 58,000 people either arrive or depart from the airport daily."

Friday morning, Hannemann announced plans to expand the mass transit route to include the airport.

The new stop will start at Kamehameha Highway and Middle Street, and run 2.1 miles to the airport stopping at the current lei stand location.

"It would make sense," said Morgan Hill, a Wailua Bay resident. "I think it's pretty obvious that most people would want to go to the airport to get in and out especially with traffic in the morning hours and late afternoon hours. It makes perfect sense to me."

Hill is picking up graduation lei today. If the mayor's plan succeeds, that's all he may end up picking up at the airport.

"It just seems to me it's obvious it would alleviate traffic all around all the major arteries like Middle Street merge, H-1/H-2 merge, all the way out to the west side," said Hill. "I can't see any down side to it personally."

But critics say light rail is too expensive and not practical for Honolulu. The mayor says time is running out.

"The easiest thing to say is, 'No, no, no, no. Grumble, grumble, grumble. Moku, moku, moku. Complain, complain, complain," said Hannemann. "Come up with an alternative. If you got a better alternative that's not going to cost much money, I want to hear it."

The cost for the airport stop is about $350 million.

More money, and more debate in the mass transit saga.

Funding has not been secured for this addition, but the mayor says there's still time, and he's hoping the money comes from the state's airport fund or a percentage of the general excise tax.

He hopes to break ground by 2009.
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Old May 29th, 2008, 02:11 AM   #26
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Quote:
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Here's our ferry service, the Hawaii Superferry.
Honolulu also has a commuter ferry called "The Boat":

http://www.trytheboat.com/
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Old May 30th, 2008, 04:10 PM   #27
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Luckily they chose the real deal, real rail.
I think it offers the best combination of capacity, and reasonable running costs.
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Old July 7th, 2008, 05:17 AM   #28
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Fight over planned rail service takes a new turn
3 July 2008

HONOLULU (AP) - Another citizens group has joined the fray over the city's planned $3.7 billion elevated commuter rail system.

Go Rail Go, which favors the project advocated by Mayor Mufi Hannemann, on Wednesday criticized Stop Rail Now, accusing the anti-rail group of spreading deceptive statements.

"They're putting out a lot of misleading, distorting information," Go Rail Go officer Ken Wong said.

For its part, Stop Rail Now made a similar accusation against taxpayer-funded radio ads supporting the project.

"I found there's a whole lot of misinformation, deceptive information, and it's being paid for at taxpayers expense," John Carroll, Stop Rail Now's lead attorney, said Wednesday.

Carroll's group demanded Hannemann pull the ads in 48 hours or it would seek a temporary restraining order and file a lawsuit claiming fraud for false statements.

Elisa Yadao, a spokeswoman for Hannemann, defended the ads, saying they are factual and accurate.

Maeda Timson, president of Go Rail Go, said there is widespread grass-roots support for the rail transit project.

"Here we are in 2008, gas prices are sky high, traffic is out of control and our last best chance for a better transportation system is this rail project," Timson said. "I'm here today as part of the silent majority to stand up and say we support rail transit."

Meanwhile, Stop Rail Now said it has collected 35,000 signatures for a ballot initiative that would ask voters whether the city should exclude trains from Honolulu mass transit options. The group needs about 5,000 more signatures by Aug. 1 to get the measure on the November ballot.
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Old July 8th, 2008, 11:54 PM   #29
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Why elevated? Is there something about the volcanic soil that would make tunneling prohibitively expensive? Or, why not 'at grade'?

With land at such a premium on the islands, it would seem a true subway might not be a bad idea.
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Old July 31st, 2008, 06:44 PM   #30
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New polls released on rail transit
28 July 2008

HONOLULU (AP) - More results have been released from two separate polls on Oahu's mass transit system.

One poll finds most residents don't expect to use a new rail system but still support it. The other shows most residents approve of Mayor Mufi Hannemann's handling of the proposed $4 bill mass transit system.

According to The Honolulu Advertiser-KGMB survey, 47 percent say they are very unlikely to regularly ride the train. Only 16 percent say they are very likely to ride the train.

The poll surveyed 510 residents and has a 6.2 margin of error.

The poll taken for the Honolulu Star-Bulletin and KITV also showed 81 percent of those surveyed said they drive alone to work

The survey polled 402 Oahu residents and has a margin error of 4.8 percent.
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Old July 31st, 2008, 09:22 PM   #31
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Only 16 percent say they are very likely to ride the train.
I suppose that would increase as soon as the system proves to be reliable and people get used to it.
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Old August 1st, 2008, 06:08 AM   #32
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Its about time they started building a rail-based mass transit system. The geography of the city is perfectly suited for it.

It makes MUCH more sense than that wide "interstate" highway that cuts through the city.
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Old August 1st, 2008, 07:20 AM   #33
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It took me 3 @$%@$# hours to get from Punchbowl to Makakilo today. %@# this traffic. I say hurry up and build the damn thing. Thank God for the north shore. Don't have to deal with this crap every day. I'd go friggin postal
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Old August 1st, 2008, 07:27 AM   #34
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Luckily I live in the city, I bike my way around town. I can't imagine using the H1/H2 on a daily basis during rush hour, I would go nuts.
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Old August 1st, 2008, 08:09 AM   #35
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I'm usually not one to advocate road rage, but I saw a fiat almost ram some jackass line-cutter in a pickup into the viaduct, and I swear I was so close to gwan up and finish the job.

I can only embrace the aloha spirt for so long in hours of gridlocked traffic before I go all tora tora tora on someones ass
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Old August 4th, 2008, 09:38 PM   #36
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After decades of starts & stops, Honolulu is long overdue for a rail transit system. Although the city's population is modest, its quite densely populated & concentrated along a long narrow corrider along the Oahu oceafront that's ideally served by rail.

As for technology options, Vancouver's rail system would be an ideal choice. It has proven cost-effective, both in terms of operating & capital costs, & has been continually expanded & has proven itself.
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Old August 5th, 2008, 06:58 PM   #37
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Honolulu city clerk rejects anti-rail petition
5 August 2008

HONOLULU (AP) - Honolulu City Clerk Denise De Costa has refused to accept a petition seeking to have general election voters decide the fate of Oahu's planned $4 billion rail transit system.

De Costa on Monday reiterated her contention that the group Stop Rail Now had missed the deadline for submitting the petition with its estimated 49,000 signatures.

Stop Rail Now attorney Earle Partington says he will file a lawsuit in an effort to force De Costa to accept the petition.

The Honolulu City Council is considering other ways to get the issue before voters in November, including several proposals for charter amendments.

Council members agree some kind of transit measure should be on the ballot. They just haven't decided on the language of the questions.
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Old August 19th, 2008, 12:10 PM   #38
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Judge sides with anti-rail group
14 August 2008

HONOLULU (AP) - A judge on Thursday ordered City Clerk Denise De Costa to accept a petition to put an anti-rail measure on the November ballot.

The group Stop Rail Now had filed suit after De Costa refused to accept the petition, saying it had been submitted too late. She based her decision on an interpretation of the City Charter.

"The public interest is quite clear," Circuit Judge Karl Sakamoto said in siding with Stop Rail Now. "The voice of the people cannot be suffocated by the erroneous reading of the law by its own government."

"We're delighted," said Dennis Callan, co-chairman of Stop Rail Now. "The city clerk was completely out of line for denying us on the ballot and it was proven today."

Following the ruling, De Costa said she will process the petition, which the group says contains the signatures of 49,041 registered voters. De Costa has indicated 44,535 of the signatures must be valid to get the measure on the ballot.

Stop Rail Now attorney Earle Partington said the group is confident it will have enough validated signatures to ensure the measure will go to the voters.

Stop Rail Now is seeking to halt city plans to build a $4 billion rail transit system. Its proposed ordinance reads: "Honolulu mass transit shall not include trains or rail."

Meanwhile, the City Council is considering resolving the transit issue through possibly amending the City Charter.

Councilman Charles Djou has proposes separate charter amendments. One would ask voters if they want a rail system. The other calls for the creation of a transit authority to oversee design, construction and operation of the 20-mile system linking East Kapolei and Ala Moana. Councilman Todd Apo has submitted his version of a charter amendment that combines the two proposals.

For his part, Djou said Thursday that Sakamoto's ruling should bring an end to council efforts to decide the issue through amending the charter.

"I think today's court decision should effectively kill further City Council deliberations on a charter amendment regarding rail as well as a transit authority," he said.

Proposed charter amendments must be approved by the council before Sept. 5 to go on the Nov. 4 general election ballot.
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Old August 21st, 2008, 10:43 PM   #39
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I find it shocking that a group of petition goers, who most probably have a very small grasp of what modern rail technology is, can be opposed to an environmentally clean mode of public transport. Instead they would rather have hundreds of exhaust spewing buses? A ROW LRT would work very well in Honolulu and wouldn't have to cost that much.

A metro like Vancouver's would cost a lot if Honolulu wanted to do tunnels and an elevated guideway might not turn on taxpayers. But a grade level ROW LRT would fit the bill. Though, does Honolulu even do rapid buses yet? This might be an alternative and then move onto lrt/tram after.
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Old August 22nd, 2008, 07:08 AM   #40
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I wonder if people can sue residents for using cars due to environmental factors .. turn the tables around.
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