Tag Archives: Dallas

Ft Worth Takes Steps On Rail Link To Dallas

Fort Worth Star-Telegram via California Rail News

As state lawmakers in Austin debate measures that could kill plans for high-speed trains between downtown Dallas and Houston, the Fort Worth City Council is moving forward with plans to create a rail link to Dallas.

Fort Worth and Dallas are in the process of preparing for a 30- to 40-mile high-speed rail line between the two cities called the DFW Core Express. A $15 million environmental impact study of the possible route is expected to be completed in 2018.

As state lawmakers in Austin debate measures that could kill plans for high-speed trains between downtown Dallas and Houston, the Fort Worth City Council is moving forward with plans to create a rail link to Dallas.

Fort Worth and Dallas are in the process of preparing for a 30- to 40-mile high-speed rail line between the two cities called the DFW Core Express. A $15 million environmental impact study of the possible route is expected to be completed in 2018.

On Tuesday, the Fort Worth city council considered creating a local government corporation with Dallas, an entity that would govern inter-city passenger rail service. Discussions are also focusing on including a stop in Arlington and adding that city to the corporation.

DART police officer among those killed in Dallas

A Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) police officer was among five police officers shot and killed last night during a sniper attack in Dallas.
Brent Thompson
Photo: Dallas Area Rapid Transit

Seven other police officers and two civilians were wounded in the attack, which occurred during a demonstration against the shootings of black men by police in Louisiana and Minnesota earlier this week, the Dallas Morning News reported this morning.

DART Police Officer Brent Thompson, 43, was killed during the protest, DART officials said in a post on the agency’s website. Thompson is the first DART officer killed in the line of duty since DART formed a police department in 1989. He joined the department in 2009.

Among the wounded police officers, three are DART officers and they are expected to recover from their injuries, according to DART. No other DART employees working in downtown Dallas during the protest or shooting were injured.

DART services in downtown Dallas were suspended following the shooting. The agency was evaluating its operating plans for today. It will post updates on DART.org and via Twitter @dartmedia or by email update service at http://www.DART.org/rideralerts.

“As you can imagine, our hearts are broken. This is something that touches every part of our organization,” DART officials said in the website post.

The American Public Transportation Association (APTA) this morning released the following statement from its Chairwoman Valarie McCall and Acting President and Chief Executive Officer Richard White:

“It was with a very heavy heart that the American Public Transportation Association and its transit members learned about the shooting in Dallas last night. We mourn the loss of innocent life and send our prayers and thoughts to the officers, including the DART officers, and their families.

“We have reached out to the Dallas Area Rapid Transit to extend our condolences on behalf of the public transportation industry.”

DART ‘pursuing two paths’ to get rail on Cotton Belt

Dallas, Denton and Collin County residents may not have to wait two decades for an east-west rail corridor to connect to the region’s north-south transit spokes. Well, maybe.

Dallas Area Rapid Transit board member Gary Slagel said today that the transit agency is looking at different ways to speed up getting rail service on the eastern portion of the Cotton Belt line, which runs from Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport to Plano.

The agency plans to have service running by 2035. But it faces pressure from member city Addison and regional leaders to expedite that time frame. Slagel said the agency is also exploring whether it start rail service in two phases. The first would run trains from the airport to Addison before 2035. The second would then finish the route from Addison to Plano.

“We are pursuing two paths,” Slagel told the Regional Transportation Council today.

The RTC today discussed a regional policy that could require DART to get rail service going before 2035 or to come up with a stop-gap measure like bus rapid transit until it gets enough money for rail.

Slagel also sits on the RTC, which sets transportation policy and steers mobility money to area projects. So does Addison City Council member Bruce Arfsten, who told his fellow RTC members that his city opposes anything but rail service. Addison has paid more than $244.8 million into DART since 1984, but has yet to see a single transit train run through its city.

Arfsten said a stop-gap like bus rapid transit could actually delay rail service past 2035.

“We don’t really see that as an option,” he said.

Fort Worth’s transportation agency The T plans to run rail from that city’s downtown to the airport on the western side of the Cotton Belt line. That project could get $125 million in federal funds if Congress doesn’t disagree with that portion of President Obama’s proposed budget for next year.

The RTC will likely vote on a policy about DART’s portion of the Cotton Belt line when it votes on the region’s long-range transportation plan, director Michael Morris said Thursday.

“This policy puts DART in a position to advance this corridor if they can,” Morris said.

High Speed Rail

If you follow us, you know we have the most complete news on Florida.

Dallas Houston Bullet Train
Dallas Houston Bullet Train

 

KC Jones has been following Texas Central Railway’s plan to build a Dallas-to-Houston bullet train.

California Bullet Train
California Bullet Train

 

On to California. Their biggest problem has been finding. But now private investors are warming to California high-speed rail. Does this means maybe a 50-mile segment called “The Pepsi Trail”; or maybe naming rights for stations: “next station stop is Goldman Sachs”? The Sacramento Business Journal sees many possibilities. Nine companies, mostly large construction, engineering and infrastructure firms that have worked on high-speed rail elsewhere, have written letters saying they are interested in financing part of what would be the state’s largest-ever infrastructure project. “We would be very interested in participating in the competition for the construction and financing of California high-speed rail projects,” reads part of a letter from AECOM, a major engineering firm. Other companies writing to bullet train planners include Grupo ACS, Sener, Vinci ConcessionsSiemens, Railgrup, Sacyr, Acciona Concesiones and Astaldi SpA.

AmtrakLincolnService04

The New York Times has presented a report on the almost $11 billion spent on High Speed Rail by the Obama Administration.

High-speed rail was supposed to be President Obama’s signature transportation project, but despite the administration spending nearly $11 billion since 2009 to develop faster passenger trains, the projects have gone mostly nowhere and the United States still lags far behind Europe and China.

While Republican opposition and community protests have slowed the projects here, transportation policy experts and members of both parties also place blame for the failures on missteps by the Obama administration — which in July asked Congress for nearly $10 billion more for high-speed initiatives.

Instead of putting the $11 billion directly into those projects, critics say, the administration made the mistake of parceling out the money to upgrade existing Amtrak service, which will allow trains to go no faster than 110 miles per hour. None of the money originally went to service in the Northeast Corridor, the most likely place for high-speed rail.

Continue reading the main story

On a 30-mile stretch of railroad between Westerly and Cranston, R.I., Amtrak’s 150-m.p.h. Acela hits its top speed — for five or 10 minutes. On the crowded New York to Washington corridor, the Acela averages only 80 m.p.h., and a plan to bring it up to the speed of Japanese bullet-trains, which can top 220 m.p.h., will take $150 billion and 26 years, if it ever happens.

Amtrak Northeast Corridor
Amtrak Northeast Corridor

New Jersey News 12 has reported on “Feds take first step in bringing high speed rail to Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor in NJ”

The federal government is spending hundreds of millions of dollars to bring high speed rail to the Northeast.

Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor, running from Washington, D.C. to Boston, is the crown jewel of the nation’s railroad system. 

Trains traveling 160 mph could soon fly across the rails, and New Jersey’s tracks are the key to the whole plan.

 

Chinese Electric Locomotive
Chinese Electric Locomotive

Finally, a Forbes story on Chinese High Speed Rail.

DART, DFW Airport prepare for Orange Line extension opening

Exciting times in Dallas. KC Jones recently reported on Texas Central Railway’s plan to build a Dallas-to-Houston bullet train is gaining speed.

Now the Train To The Plane is ready to open. See a picture above of the new station.

The rest of the story now
Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) and Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport are making final preparations on the last segment of the Orange Line, which is scheduled to open on Aug. 18.The airport built the station as part of its construction at Terminal A, the first of the legacy terminals to be renovated. The partnership will enable DART to open the light-rail extension four months ahead of schedule, according to a press release.The five-mile extension links Terminal A and Belt Line Station, with service continuing to major regional destinations including Irving-Las Colinas, Dallas Market Center and downtown Dallas.Regional leaders believe that light-rail service connecting the airport to the DART network will help attract businesses and conferences to the area. It also will serve airport employees; DFW Airport is one of the region’s largest employment centers.

Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) gets you around Dallas and 12 surrounding cities with modern public transit services and customer facilities tailored to make your trip fast, comfortable and economical. Our extensive network of DART Rail, Trinity Railway Express (TRE) and bus services moves more than 220,000 passengers per day across our 700-square-mile service area.
The DART Rail System provides fast, convenient service to work, shopping and entertainment destinations in Dallas, Carrollton, Farmers Branch, Garland, Irving, Plano and Richardson. Plus, the TRE commuter line links DART customers to DFW International Airport and downtown Fort Worth.Free parking is available at most rail stations, and most are served by DART bus routes specially timed to make transfers between buses and trains quick and easy.Popular shopping and entertainment destinations near DART Rail stations in Dallas include NorthPark Center and Upper Greenville Avenue (Park Lane Station), West Village (Cityplace/Uptown Station), Mockingbird Station (Mockingbird Station), the Dallas Museum of Art (St. Paul Station), American Airlines Center (Victory Station), the entertaining West End Historic District (West End Station), Fair Park (Fair Park Station and MLK, Jr. Station), the Dallas Convention Center (Convention Center Station) and the Dallas Zoo (Dallas Zoo Station).Popular destinations in surrounding cities include the Renaissance Hotel and the Eisemann Center for the Performing Arts (Galatyn Park Station in Richardson); Downtown Plano, the ArtCentre of Plano and the Courtyard Theater (Downtown Plano Station); the Granville Arts Center (Downtown Garland Station); Downtown Irving (Downtown Irving/Heritage Crossing Station); the Farmers Branch Historical Park (Farmers Branch Station); Downtown Carrollton (Downtown Carrollton Station); the University of Dallas (University of Dallas Station); the Irving Convention Center (Irving Convention Center Station) and Las Colinas (Las Colinas Urban Center Station).

Downtown Fort Worth is now just about an hour’s ride from Union Station in downtown Dallas via the TRE. Business commuters love the convenience – and if you’re looking for a Saturday adventure, Cowtown is Wowtown! From Fort Worth’s Intermodal Transportation Center (ITC) or T&P Station it’s a short bus ride to the bustling Sundance Square dining and entertainment district in the heart of the city, the historic Fort Worth Stockyards Old West district, or the famed museums in the city’s Cultural District. TRE information is available at www.TrinityRailwayExpress.org.
DART has come along way both structurally and culturally. All I remembered seeing was an RDC (Rail Diesel Car) or two. The area was strongly “car culture”. Asked some of the folks I was visiting if they had used it yet. The answer: “No, but I think our neighbor’s maid rides it to work.