The Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation (Hart) has announced the completion of the first 100 support columns of its planned elevated rail system.

HART aims to complete 220 columns by the end of this year, which will support the elevated guideway for the first ten miles of the rail route, running from East Kapolei to Aloha Stadium.

"The ongoing work brings us one step closer to the day when rail will bring much needed traffic relief for our residents and families islandwide."

The first ten miles of the route will open in 2017, while the full 20-mile line is expected to be open for service in 2019.

Honolulu City Council chairman Ernest Martin said: "The ongoing work brings us one step closer to the day when rail will bring much needed traffic relief for our residents and families islandwide."

HART board chairman Ivan Lui-Kwan said: "Working together, we will create a rail transit system to improve the lives of residents by having them spend less time in traffic and more quality time at home with their families."

The construction of the Waipahu train maintenance and operations centre, as well as the production of the guideway segments, are also currently underway.

HART plans to award a contract for the second half of the rail guideway from Aloha Stadium to Ala Moana Centre later this year, alongside other major construction contracts.