HonoluluTraffic.com et all Wins Lawsuit Challenging Rail: FTA/City guilty on three counts, not guilty on 20

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City’s rail rendering

BY HONOLULUTRAFFIC.COM – Ninth Circuit Court Judge Wallace Tashima yesterday issued his ruling in the federal lawsuit, Honolulutraffic.com et al. vs. Federal Transit Administration and the City of Honolulu.

In his conclusion, he granted our “Plaintiff’s Motion for Summary Judgment with respect to:


(1) their Section 4(f) claims that Defendants [City/FTA] arbitrarily and capriciously failed to complete reasonable efforts to identify above-ground TCPs [Traditional Cultural Properties] prior to issuing the ROD [Record of Decision];

(2) Defendants’ failure adequately to consider the Beretania Street Tunnel alternative prior to eliminating it as imprudent; and

(3) Defendants’ failure adequately to consider whether the Project will constructively use Mother Waldron Park.

The Court grants Defendants’ Motion for Summary Judgment with respect to all other claims raised in said motion.”

The City is claiming victory with a win of 20 claims to our 3. However, this is not a football game, nor an election. A better analogy is that of someone charged with 23 counts of murder and found guilty of three of them. The murderer could claim that he won in court 20-3 but that would avail him little when he mounts the gallows.

The three issues on which we won require the City/FTA to do their homework on several issues and then amend the FEIS and the Record of Decision and on one count may possibly have to redo them in their entirety.

At the least, there will be further months of delay. We will have a clearer view of the future when Judge Tashima considers a Permanent Injunction against the Project in a hearing on December 12.