Pineapple Express Gets Upgrade

Dole Plantation has extended the length of its popular Pineapple Express train ride to allow greater viewing of native plants in its Plantation Garden.

The new route was increased to 2.2 miles from its original 2-mile course, making the ride through the plantation property three minutes longer.

In addition to the longer tour, a new train platform was created to provide additional passenger seating.

The raised ceilings will allow more natural lighting, and a separate, secondary platform to loading riders with mobility issues has been added.

Mike Moon, director of operations at Dole Plantation, said changes were the idea of David Murdoch, president of Dole Foods and Castle & Cook Inc. Murdoch’s plan was to increase visibility of the popular train that already hosts some 250,000 riders each year.

“People just like to see trains,” said Moon. “They hear the whistle and take notice, and the kids get excited. It’s really a neat experience.”

Kahu Curt Kekuna of Kawaiaha’o Church recently blessed the new Pineapple Express platform, tracks and barn at a ceremony attended by two dozen Dole Plantation and Castle & Cooke employees, as well as architects and other partners who were involved in developing the new elements.