Residents React To The New Rail Route - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Residents React To The New Rail Route

Mufi Hannemann Mufi Hannemann
Sammy Baurile Sammy Baurile
Gerald Penaflor Gerald Penaflor

By: Paul Drewes

(KHNL) - The City Council approved a transit route running from east Kapolei through Salt Lake to the Ala Moana Center.

But there is mixed reaction to the route chosen, depending on where people live.

The bustling community of Salt Lake is full of cars and condos.

Thousands of people live here. So hearing of the city council's vote to bring rail to this busy town, is welcome news to some. "They got a lot of people here , they need the ride to go back and forth to town. That's one thing good over this decision." says long time Salt Lake resident, Sammy Baurile.

"There are so many people that live around here. There are so many condominiums here, there is a great need for the residents here." adds Nanita Andrada-Jose.

For Tony Agao, who has lived here for 25 years, he is happy not just for himself but for his seven year old son as well as future Salt Lake residents.

"We are doing this for the kids. We are the ones who made the decision now, because we know we can't rely on the freeway itself." says Agao.

But the mood is darker for many in Manoa, who rely on public transportation. They were hoping rail would relieve traffic and parking problems around the University of Hawaii. "I know a lot of the students and workers come to Manoa, so it will affect everybody here, that wanted to get rail." says UH student Katrina Menor.

"The parking is crazy, that's why I don't drive. Traffic is horrible and gas is going up. Its all those dingers that are hurting the students, and what do the politicians want to do - just talk about solutions." adds frustrated student, Gerald Penaflor.

Now, Hawaii has to wait for federal funding for the rail project. In the meantime, Mayor Mufi Hannemann wants the city to start the preliminary engineering and planning so the rail project can break ground in 2009.

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