A couple of local TV stations posted online polls after covering the presentation by the Hawaii Chapter of the American Institute of Architects at the Capitol hosted by Governor Lingle on January 18, 2010.

A fairly comprehensive and neutrally worded poll was developed by the FOX affiliate KHON as part of their well-watched Channel 2 News. The poll asked “How should the City and State proceed with the rail transit project?” and gave four options [my comments in brackets]

*(1) Elevated as planned [this is the city’s proposal or Mufi’s Rail]

*(2) At ground level [this is the vaguely described option supported by the Hawaii Chapter of the American Planning Association]

*(3) Mix of above and at ground level [a specific design has been presented by rail expert Phil Craig funded by Bishop Estate and supported by American Institute of Architects-Hawaii]

*(4) Scrap the whole thing [this is the Panos and Stop Rail Now preferred option]

Conclusion? Basically two thirds opined that the whole thing should be scrapped!

Below I show a snapshot of the poll at 10:30 AM the next day with numbers only slightly changed from those reported by Joe Moore at the 10 PM news. [Polls unpopular to the establishment tend to disappear quickly.]

There is wisdom into not rushing mega-projects but contemplating them carefully. It took about four years but the public now gets it: The proposed rail is a boondoggle that we don’t need and we can’t afford. Will elected officials get it soon enough?

‘Panos D. Prevedouros, PhD is a Professor of Civil Engineering at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. He blogs at http://fixoahu.blogspot.com and can be reached at mailto:panos.prevedouros@gmail.com/’