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Honolulu Rail Project Receives Record of Decision

Rail Project Contracts Under Budget by $165 Million

(Tues., Jan. 18, 2011)–The Federal Transit Administration (FTA)
today issued a Record of Decision for the Honolulu Rail Transit
Project, confirming that the project has met all the requirements
of the environmental review process and clearing the way for
construction to begin on Honolulu’s first rail system.

FTA Administrator Peter Rogoff presented the Record of Decision
(ROD) to Honolulu Mayor Peter Carlisle and Toru Hamayasu, general
manager for the City’s Rapid Transit Division, at FTA offices in
Washington, D.C.

“This is one of the most significant milestones for the rail
project,” Carlisle said. “We will soon be able to provide residents
with a sensible alternative to our congested roads and highways and
improve their overall quality of life. Rail transit construction
will also create thousands of jobs and fuel our state’s economy –
it’s time to get those shovels in the ground.”

“Today marks an important milestone in Oahu’s quest to become a
more transit-friendly island,” said FTA Administrator Peter Rogoff.
“With the completion of the National Environmental Policy Act
process, the City of Honolulu has met all of the laws and
regulations of the environmental review and we look forward to the
day when Honolulu’s citizens can ride the rails in comfort, breathe
cleaner air, and avoid getting stuck in time-wasting traffic
jams.”

Carlisle said he was pleased to have the FTA’s approval. “This
is a huge accomplishment and reflects the strong confidence the FTA
has in this project. Our transit team has worked closely with FTA
throughout the process and this shows that our plan is sound and
our project is on solid footing.”

The FTA’s approval follows Governor Neil Abercrombie’s
acceptance of the State’s Final Environmental Impact Statement in
December. The project’s EIS identified environmental, community and
economic benefits and impacts of the rail system as well as
mitigation measures for addressing these issues.

The $5.5 billion transit project is a 20-mile elevated rail
system connecting East Kapolei with Ala Moana Center.  It
includes 21 stations in communities including Waipahu, Pearl City,
Aiea, Kalihi, Chinatown, Downtown Honolulu and Kakaako. There will
also be stations at activity centers such as UH-West Oahu, Leeward
Community College, Pearl Highlands, Pearlridge, Aloha Stadium,
Honolulu International Airport and Honolulu Community College.

The City has already awarded a construction contract for the
first phase of the elevated rail guideway from East Kapolei to
Pearl City.  A second contract for the train storage and
maintenance facility in Waipahu is expected to be executed shortly.
The city is scheduled to award two more major contracts this year
for the second phase of the rail route from Pearl City to Aloha
Stadium and for the “core systems,” which consists of the train
vehicles and the control center for the rail system.

The City is scheduled to award the design contract for the third
section of the route from Aloha Stadium to Honolulu Airport later
this year. The final two phases of the rail alignment from Honolulu
Airport to Ala Moana Center will be built through a
design-bid-build process. The train stations along the rail route
will be designed and constructed through separate future
contracts.

The $5.5 billion transit project is a 20-mile elevated rail
system connecting East Kapolei with Ala Moana Center.  It
includes 21 stations in communities including Waipahu, Pearl City,
Aiea, Kalihi, Chinatown, Downtown Honolulu and Kakaako. There will
also be stations at activity centers such as UH-West Oahu, Leeward
Community College, Pearl Highlands, Pearlridge, Aloha Stadium,
Honolulu International Airport and Honolulu Community College.

Train service for the first leg of the transit route from East
Kapolei to Aloha Stadium is scheduled to begin in 2015, with full
service along the entire 20-mile route from East Kapolei to Ala
Moana Center in 2019.

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