Rail Construction Shouldn’t Have Started, Hawaii Supreme Court Rules

The Hawaii Supreme Court agreed today with a woman who said the city and county of Honolulu should have completed its archeological surveys before starting any construction on its $5.26 billion heavy rail project.

The city performed some of this work with the intention of doing more later, and is already building columns for the 20-mile long rapid transit system.

Paulette Kaleikini is a descendent of Native Hawaiians, and in her legal challenge to the Supreme Court said the city first should have accounted for burial grounds in downtown Honolulu and Kakaako.

The city, however, argued that it could do that work later since construction in that area wasn’t scheduled to occur until the fourth phase of the project. Construction is currently underway in West Oahu.

We just got our hands on the 82 page ruling — which you can read here — and you can check back with Civil Beat’s homepage later to learn more.

You can read previous Civil Beat coverage on the case here.

Nick Grube

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