Thursday, January 20, 2011

Congressman John Mica (R): ‘I Support this Project’

Rep. John Mica, new Chairman of the Republican-controlled House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, told Honolulu Mayor Peter Carlisle today he likes what he sees with Honolulu rail.

“I support this project,” Mica said, “especially with Honolulu’s local commitment, and I will continue to work with Rep. Hirono and the Federal Transit Administration to make sure the project does not get bogged down in bureaucratic red tape.”

Mica’s comments reflected his familiarity with Honolulu’s unique geography, which federal authorities for decades have said is a near-perfect fit for a rail line that would be a transit "spine" along the length of the city, with feeder bus routes connecting to the elevated train stations.

“Honolulu is bordered by the mountains on one side and the ocean on the other,” he said. “This project will service the area where the vast majority of Oahu’s population live and work and will help address the area’s traffic congestion issues.”

The project’s final environmental impact statement projects daily ridership of the grade-separated system of 100,000-plus, resulting in at least 30,000 fewer cars on Honolulu streets and highways each day from what would be the case if rail were not built.

According to a press release issued by Carlisle’s office, the Mayor also met today with Rep. John Duncan (R-TN), Chairman of the House Highways and Transit Subcommittee; Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-OR), Ranking Member of the subcommittee, and Rep. Nick Rahall (D-WV), Ranking Member of Rep. Mica’s committee. Carlyle’s release said all “expressed their willingness to work with the City and County of Honolulu as it advances its rail project.”

“I am very pleased and grateful to Rep. Mica for his continuing support for the Honolulu Rail Transit Project,” Carlisle said. “Receiving the Record of Decision was a tremendous step forward for Honolulu, and Rep. Mica has offered to help us continue our implementation and expedite the construction of our project by working with the FTA, Rep. Hirono, our entire Congressional Delegation and the U.S. Congress.”

No comments: