A blessing was held today for the $340 million Consolidated Rental Car facility or “ConRAC” facility at Maui’s Kahului Airport. The blessing comes a day ahead of Wednesday’s official public opening of the facility and Electric Train station.
Incoming travelers renting a car will grab their baggage and jump on a new electric train, taking them on a three to four minute ride to the brand new ConRAC facility.
Airport officials say the electric trains replace some two dozen shuttle buses that currently run 75 to 85 trips an hour between the terminal and car rental companies across the street. It will travel at 15 mph and make two stops for a six minute round trip. Each train car holds 30 passengers with the ability to transport 900 people per hour.
The electric train is part of the larger transformation that features the new car rental facility itself–a three level structure with an additional basement level.
The ConRAC has 1.2 million square feet of space and sits on a 19 acre parcel. The building features a total of 4,436 parking stalls: 3,743 for car rentals; and 693 stalls on the upper level for airport staff/employee parking and space for overflow inventory. There’s also 72 fuel pumps (36 on level 1 and 2), 11 service bays and 12 car wash racks.
Airport officials say the facility was entirely funded by Customer Facility Charge, the daily $4.50 fee charged to rental car customers in Hawaiʻi. With an estimated 2,000 vehicles rented on Maui each day, airport officials say the fees were enough to fund the facility, with no taxpayer money involved.
In 2010, the state legislature reviewed a bill that sought the increase in the rental motor vehicle customer facility charge from $1 daily to $4.50. Lawmakers at the time noted that the revenues generated would strongly support the program as well as the bonds to finance related ConRAC construction projects at the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport in Honolulu and Kahului Airport on Maui.
The Maui project employed between 300 to 350 during construction and the ConRAC facility will employ about that many individuals when fully operational, with some companies planning for expansion following their move to the ConRAC.
Moving employee parking to the ConRAC will free up space for the general public at the main lot where crews are also re-striping to better accommodate parking needs.
Plans call for the old rental car area across from Lānui Circle, off of Koeheke Street to be used for businesses.