June 13, 2024

City gets long-awaited federal funds to help build rail line to Kakaako

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) – With the stroke of a pen, $744 million will be released to finish Honolulu’s rail system all the way to Kakaako.

Mayor Rick Blangiardi signed an amended Full Funding Grant Agreement on Thursday.

The original deal, signed in 2012, provided over $1.5 billion from the Federal Transit Administration.

But funding stopped in 2017 after HART only received a little over half of the money. Federal authorities halted payments amid rail building, planning and management concerns.

Under the new agreement, $125 million is now available immediately — and the rest will be released in four separate phases.

“This is a big win that will deliver millions in federal funding to complete Honolulu’s Skyline,” said U.S. Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii.

“It was a long and difficult process, but HART and the city have worked hard to provide more accountability and get this project back on track. I will continue to work with our federal and state partners to make sure that we complete this project for the people of Honolulu.”

Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi issued the following statement on the news:

“Achieving FTA approval and finalizing the amended Full-Funding Grant Agreement this afternoon marks a significant milestone in our partnership with the FTA. This crucial step paves the way for completing the initial phase of Skyline, to the Civic Center station in Kakaako.”

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