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Honolulu transit-rail project costs exceed original budget


Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transit's (HART) rail project could cost at least $500 million more than originally budgeted, according to a financial plan unveiled at last week's board meeting.

HART officials blamed the $5.26 billion project's rising costs on lagging tax revenue, increasing construction costs and project delays. HART Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer Dan Grabauskas unveiled a 10-point plan to address the financial challenges.

"We want to be transparent and let the public know early on what some of our financial challenges are," said Grabauskas in a prepared statement. "Legal and delay costs have had a cumulative effect and pushed us into a tight construction market resulting in bids coming in significantly higher."

One solution involves repackaging contract solicitations to further reduce scope and cost, and the pursuit of additional revenue sources, including public-private partnerships and other financing options, he said.

The project involves constructing a 20-mile, 21-station Honolulu Rail Transit line that will transport riders to West Oahu, Pearl City, Aloha Stadium, Pearl Harbor Naval Base, Honolulu International Airport, downtown Honolulu and Ala Moana Center.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 12/23/2014