Sunday, September 18, 2016


Great minds think alike: alternate uses for an unwanted elevated rail guideway

by Larry Geller


An op-ed in today’s Star-Advertiser is headlined “It’s not too late to make right call on rail” and is accompanied by a picture of New York City’s “High Line”, which is a disused elevated rail line repurposed as a public park.

The High Line, featuring innovative seating and other attractive features for individuals and families, is very popular among residents and tourists..

The Honolulu rail guideway is a bit narrower than the High Line but it might work anyway.

Cycle snake_thumb[2]

Great minds think alike. In May, with tongue firmly in cheek, I suggested we could emulate Copenhagen’s elevated bikeway.

Commuters could avoid traffic, get exercise, and not be packed like sardines into a hot train car to and from work.

Just leave what’s built as is, but provide entrance and exit ramps for the bikes.

Skating rink[7]

Or check out this April Fool themed article in which Mayor Tam officially opens Honolulu’s new elevated ice skating rink in 2018.

It could transform an eyesore into a unique recreational resource eyesore, anyway.

As you read the op-ed in today’s paper, keep in mind that this elevated rail line/bike path/skating rink was to cost less than $3 billion initially, and now upwards of $10.5 billion is commonly cited. If you think my suggestions are crazy, please note that the real thing became crazy at some point and we’re still not laughing.

I wonder if Guiness recognizes a world record for cost overruns…


Thanks for verifying that my memory (of the $3mil figure) is not totally faulty!

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