By B.J. Reyes
Before the death of U.S. Sen. Daniel Inouye on Monday, a common train of thought focused on the number of projects he had helped secure for the islands, and how many of them might carry his name after he died.
Federal Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood says the city’s planned $5.26 billion rail transit project would be a good place to start, according to Mayor Peter Carlisle.
Carlisle, who was in Washington, D.C., yesterday for the signing of the Full Funding Grant Agreement with the Federal Transit Administration for $1.55 billion in federal money for the project, says the ceremony was bittersweet because of what it meant for Honolulu as well as what the project meant to Inouye.
Carlisle, in an interview today, said:
A lot of the focus was on the loss of Dan Inouye. The ceremony that we had with Sec. LaHood and (Federal Transit) Administrator Peter Rogoff was punctuated with accolades for the senator including Sec. LaHood’s suggestion that we figure out some way to name this that would include a reference to Sen. Inouye which certainly sounds like an appropriate thing to do.
Inouye had pledged to secure the federal money for the project and famously said during this year’s mayoral campaign that nothing short of “World War III” would prevent it from coming.