TRANSIT: Dallas high-speed rail station area planning study getting underway

Jan. 18, 2017

The region is being looked at for a more aggressive application of high-speed transit

The North Central Texas Council of Governments (NCTCOG), the metropolitan planning organization for the Dallas-Fort Worth Region, announced that it has selected the Lockwood, Andrews & Newnam (LAN) team to conduct a high-speed rail (HSR) station area planning study in downtown Dallas.

Currently, three HSR corridors that would connect major urban areas of the state are under various stages of development. The corridors include the Dallas to Fort Worth HSR, Dallas to Houston HSR, and Texas-Oklahoma Passenger Rail Study. With the advent of high-speed passenger rail service for the Dallas-Fort Worth region, major transportation and land use changes will occur. The manner in which these impacts are absorbed and mitigated will be critical to successful implementation of high-speed passenger rail service.

“As a region of 7 million people, which will grow to nearly 11 million by 2040, the Dallas-Fort Worth region must develop transportation options like high-speed rail to meet the needs of commuters and those traveling to or from other metropolitan areas,” said Kevin Feldt, AICP, program manager for NCTCOG. “The station area planning is important to the process because it’s how passengers will interface directly with the high-speed rail service.”

The study is one of three procurement efforts, one for each station location, initiated by NCTCOG associated with the development of the Dallas to Fort Worth HSR, known as the Core Express Service (CES) corridor. (The other two study areas are Fort Worth and Arlington). The Dallas HSR area planning study will assist NCTCOG, the City of Dallas and other agencies to:

  • Evaluate potential locations of a HSR station to ensure optimal station area accessibility;
  • Examine compatibility with the station location and design proposed by Texas Central Partners for the Dallas to Houston HSR system;
  • Develop a station area plan that advances the City’s economic development opportunities; and
  • Inform elected officials, policy makers and other HSR studies.

“This study is a critical step in assessing the compatibility of the various high-speed rail programs and implementing a seamless regional rail system,” said Chris Masters, P.E., LAN’s vice president of rail and transit.

The study will be completed in summer 2017.

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