March 22, 2019

The Honolulu Rail Transit Project is abuzz with activity!  All 20 miles of the alignment are seeing varying degrees of construction work, from station construction in the west to utility relocation work near the Project's final stop at Ala Moana. Rail construction is forging ahead.

Among the busiest areas is the Project's hub, the Rail Operations Center (ROC). The ROC recently took delivery of it's sixth train with more train deliveries expected throughout the year. Eventually, the HART fleet will balloon to 20 trains with each made up of four rail cars, making each train nearly a football field in length. 

Upon delivery, the interior of each train must be fitted to HART's specifications before being put through a rigorous testing schedule to ensure safety and performance. Recently, HART engineers allowed our cameras on board one of the trains while its interior was being installed.

Walkthrough one of HART's Trains
 Take a walk through one of HART's Trains

Each train will be fully air-conditioned with free wi-fi and will easily accommodate passengers with bicycles, strollers, surfboards, coolers, and luggage.  The trains will also be fully compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act, so passengers with mobility impairments will enjoy the trains' wide entry ways and aisles, dedicated seating areas, and open gangways between rail cars.  Trains will also feature priority seating senior citizens.


Members of the HART Board of Directors (left to right): Michele Chun Brunngraber, Kamani Kuala'au, Glenn Nohara, Toby Martyn, Ember Shinn, Wes Frysztacki, Jade Butay, HART Board Chair Damien Kim, and Hoyt Zia.
The Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation's Board of Directors recently conducted a Project Oversight Committee Limited Meeting during a tour of the Honolulu Rail Transit Project's alignment and rail facilities. 

HART's leadership team provided informational briefings while the group traveled to the Project's segment casting yard in Campbell Industrial Park. Board members then toured HART's Rail Operations Center in Waipahu, receiving updates from HART and Ansaldo Honolulu JV personnel.  Other tour stops included visits to the Kualaka'i (East Kapolei) and Honouliuli (Ho'opili) Stations.

"It was great to see the tremendous amount of work that's already been completed," said  HART Board Chair Damien Kim. " I believe, once we reach our interim public opening, people will be just as excited to use the rail as we were in seeing it."


Board member Hoyt Zia was also excited to see the progress being made across the Project adding, "I've made a personal committment as a Board member to see this Project through to its entry into passenger service."

Board members also toured the H ō'ae'ae Station at the Waipahu Transit Center.  Of the nine stations across the Ewa-side of the Project, the H ō 'ae'ae Station is closest to completion. From there, members then viewed the Halawa (Aloha Stadium) Station, the final stop along the Ewa-most eleven miles of guideway.  It will also be the eastern most station when HART begins limited passenger service late next year.

Prescott Mattes
HART Public Involvement Intern
The HART Public Involvement team was out in force for the recent Touch-a-Truck event at Kapolei Commons. The annual event brought together children of all ages and their families to explore and even jump into the drivers' seat of several large vehicles. Among the trucks on display were emergency vehicles, construction, utility, and military trucks, along with several specialized and first-responder vehicles. 

Thousands weaved their way through the trucks on display and many of those made a stop at the HART information tent. Engineering students from Leeward Community College set up a replica model of the rail system, even allowing kids to try their hand at operating the train.

Throughout the day, the HART Public Involvement team answered numerous questions and touched on a wide range of rail education topics with those in attendance. With three stations and two "park'n'ride" facilities in the Kapolei area, Leeward residents are gearing up for rail service slated to begin in the later part of next year. 

The HART Public Involvement team held a pair of informational events this week.  Along with representatives from contractor Nan, Inc., HART met with for businesses and residents along the alignment in the Kalihi area.  HART also made a presenttion for owners and residents of Harbor Square in Downtown Honolulu.   Both areas are located within City Center Guideway & Stations (CCGS) section of the Project. 
Cith Center stretches from Middle Street to the Ala Moana Center.  Currently, utility relocation work is underway across all four miles of the segment.

During the session, HART representatives provided updates and answered questions with utililty relocation work expected to run through early 2022.


Things are ramping up at HART's Rail Operations Center in Waipahu!  With four trains already delivered so far this year and more expected in the coming months, engineers are
HART's Trains Testing over Waipahu
HART's Trains Testing over Waipahu
expanding train testing.

HART and Ansaldo Honolulu JV engineers utilize a dynamic section of track above Farrington Highway in Waipahu to perform these tests.   And while it might be a quite a sight to see the trains running on the guideway above,  HART reminds you to be especially aware of your surroundings as you move through these areas.

For pedestrians, be sure to stand clear of traffic and work areas while observing the trains.
HART & Ansaldo Honolulu JV Transports Train #3
HART & Ansaldo Honolulu JV Transports Train #3

For drivers, be aware that people may be standing near roadsides distracted by the train passing overhead.  Also, be  extra cautious as you drive through construction zones and be on the lookout for flaggers, workers, construction equipment, as well as pedestrians.  If you're driving and want to grab a look at the train, find a safe place pull to the side of the road and be clear of traffic, equipment, and pedestrians before doing so.

HART takes delivery of Train Number Four
HART takes delivery of Train Number Four
As the Honolulu Rail Transit Project moves closer to completion, the excitement and interest ramp up as well.  But remember, stay focused on the road, be aware of your surroundings, and always obey the construction zone speed limit of 25 miles per hour!  
HART thanks you for your patience and understanding as crews work to complete the Honolulu Rail Transit Project.



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