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PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD FOR DRAFT ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT FOR HONOLULU RAIL TRANSIT PROJECT

 

            The City and County of Honolulu today announced the beginning of the official public comment period for the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (Draft EIS) for Honolulu’s proposed rail transit project.  The Draft EIS presents the potential environmental and economic effects of three Build Alternatives for a rail transit system between East Kapolei and Ala Moana Center as well as a No Build Alternative.

 

            “I want to encourage all of Honolulu’s citizens to take the time to review the DEIS and comment if there are issues or matters that concern you.  This is one of the most important public works projects in our city’s history and we will only be able to build a rail system that meets our needs today and tomorrow with the full and informed involvement of the community,” said Mayor Mufi Hannemann.

 

Public Comments

Comments will be formally accepted from government agencies and the public until 4:30 p.m. on January 7, 2009. During this period, comments on the Draft EIS will be accepted via the following three ways:

  • In writing to the Department of Transportation Services, 650 South King Street, 3rd Floor, Honolulu, Hawaii 96813. Comments must be received or postmarked by January 7, 2009.
  • Online at www.honolulutransit.org.
  • At a Public Hearing in December. Persons wishing to speak at the hearings should sign up at the hearing site. Speakers will be limited to a three-minute presentation.  Dates are listed below.

 

The public comment period is mandated by federal and state laws.  All comments received will be considered as the Final EIS is prepared by the FTA and the City.   All substantive comments will be responded to in writing.

 

Draft EIS Availability

Copies of the Draft EIS are available for review at State libraries, the City library, the Department of Transportation Services office (650 South King Street – 3rd Floor), and the DTS – Rapid Transit Division office (1099 Alakea StreetSuite 1700).  In addition, the Draft EIS is online at the project’s website: www.honolulutransit.org.

 

            The project website has additional content: a video guide to the Draft EIS and a computer-simulated fly through of the two alternative alignments covered in the Draft EIS; the Salt Lake alignment and the Airport alignment. Renderings of rail transit station characteristics will be added to the website in the coming days.  Residents can request a free DVD with the Draft EIS, the video guide, computer simulations of both alignments and renderings of rail transit station characteristics by calling 566-2299 or visiting www.honolulutransit.org.

 

            Printed copies of the Draft EIS can be ordered for the reproduction cost of $59 by calling 566-2299 or visiting the project website.

 

Public Hearing Dates and Procedures

  • Saturday, December 6 from 9 to 11 a.m. at Kapolei Hale, 1000 Uluohia Street.
  • Monday, December 8 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Neal S. Blaisdell Exhibition Hall, Hawaii Suites, 777 Ward Avenue.
  • Tuesday, December 9 from 6 to 8 p.m. at Salt Lake District Park, 1159 Ala Lilikoi Place.
  • Wednesday, December 10 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Filipino Community Center, 94-428 Mokuola Street.
  • Thursday, December 11 from 6 to 8 p.m. at Bishop Museum, 1525 Bernice Street.

 

1. Elected and public officials will be heard first. Persons desiring to testify should register at the entrance to the hearing room, and will be called in order of registration.

 

2. Any individual may appear and speak for him or herself, or if duly authorized, for any local civic group, organization, club or association, subject to the rules provided herein. Speakers should give their name and address. If representing a group, this information should also be given.

 

3. Speakers must limit their statements to three minutes. Additional prepared statements or literature, pertaining to the project, may be submitted at this hearing or through 4:30 p.m. January 7, 2009 to: Department of Transportation Services, 650 South King St., 3rd Floor, Honolulu, Hawaii 96813.  These statements will be made part of the official record if they include a legible name and address.

 

4. For these hearings, all statements, oral or written, should be directed to the Hearing Official and must be related to the subject matter of the hearing.

 

5. Each person speaking before the audience must do so at the floor microphone. A court stenographer will record and transcribe the hearing procedures. If required, the Hearing Officer will announce any other specific rules governing this hearing.

 

6. As part of this public hearing process, the Honolulu Rail Transit Project Team is not allowed to respond to any questions or concerns raised by the speaker. The Project

Team will be available to address your questions in an area outside the hearing venue.

 

The meeting sites for the public hearings are accessible to persons with disabilities. Individuals requiring reasonable accommodation may request written

materials in alternative formats, sign language, interpreters, physical accessibility accommodations, or other reasonable accommodations by calling (808) 566-2299 (voice) or e-mailing info@honolulutransit.org at least 48 hours prior to the planned hearing.

 

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Contact: Wayne Y. Yoshioka at 768-8305.

Monday, November 24, 2008

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