Officials announce grand opening date for Honolulu rail transit project
Honolulu Mayor Rick Blangiardi speaks during a news conference at the Hālawa Station on Wednesday. (Courtesy City and County of Honolulu)

The first phase of the City and County of Honolulu’s long-awaited rail transit system will officially begin interim passenger operations at 2 p.m. Friday, June 30, with a grand opening celebration planned at the Hālawa Station earlier in the day.

“This is truly a momentous and historic day for the island of Oʻahu. Today’s announcement marks the culmination of decades of hard work, perseverance and overcoming difficult challenges of every kind,” said Mayor Rick Blangiardi during a news conference Wednesday at the Hālawa Station near Aloha Stadium. “We are all excited for the public to experience first-hand the transformative effect the rail will have for our island home.

The projectʻs first phase covers approximately 11 miles, stretching from the Kualakaʻi Station in East Kapolei to the Hālawa Station. Passenger service to additional stations is scheduled to begin in phases over the next few years.

All nine stations in service will be open, with fare gates allowing free rides for all in either direction until 6 p.m. Passengers will be required to use a valid HOLO card starting July 1, although rides will remain free for all until July 4. 

“With today’s announcement, we are turning the page on the largest public works project in Hawaii’s history,” Blangiardi said. “On June 30, 2023, beginning at 2 p.m., residents who have been waiting for so long, will finally have the opportunity to board these beautiful trains, and ride them for the very first time.”

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