DART Update: December 2016
Several positive developments have occurred during the last six months of 2016. The following comments are excerpts from DART’s Capital Planning publications:
1) Dallas City Council approved a resolution on October 11, 2016 recommending DART develop a subway option for D2.
2) DART Board of Directors approved its FY17 (fiscal year 2017) twenty-year financial plan on October 25, 2016 with an increased budget to accommodate a subway for D2, including authorization to seek a larger grant amount from the FTA.
3) As DART conducted Preliminary Engineering/Environmental Impact Statement (PE/EIS) efforts for the locally preferred alternative (LPA), more information on the project design and how it would operate became available and was shared with the public. By summer 2016, there was growing concern in the downtown community regarding the potential impacts of the project – primarily in locations where at-grade rail would operate, and in the transition areas where the project would enter and exit a short tunnel segment. Most concerns related to traffic, noise, property acquisition, historic resources, and visual impacts.
4) DART has also requested an extension of the Project Development phase from FTA to have time to define, evaluate and approve a refined LPA with a subway prior to resuming PE/EIS activities. A response from FTA is expected by the end of 2016.
5) DART is initiating a process called LPA Refinement as part of Project Development. This phase will take approximately 6-9 months and includes stakeholder and public involvement to help define and evaluate D2 subway options to recommend a refined LPA by June 2017. This timeframe is critical to make the annual submittal to FTA for the project, which is due in September 2017.
6) Subway routes and transition zones are now being studied with a short list of Subway Alternative Routes in March 2017. A Refined Locally Preferred Alternate (RLPA) in June 2017 for submittal to the FTA in September 2017.
Although good news that the subway is now being discussed, this issue is far from over and will require on-going vigilance by The DART Task Force of the church until the trains run in 2022. The task force will focus its current activities mostly on subway route selection.
Thanks to all of First Presbyterian Church members and friends who have communicated with Dallas City Council members and DART Board representatives. A special thanks to those who have attended the meetings, both Council and DART Board, to express support for our Church and it’s impact on the City of Dallas over these past 160 years.
Bryce Weigand and Buddy Jordan will continue to attend the stakeholder meetings as representatives for First Presbyterian Church. Feel free to contact either of us if you have any questions.
DART Update: August 22nd
We have been asked to make our presence known at the DART Board Meeting tomorrow (Tuesday, August 23rd) at 6:30 pm. A transportation shuttle from the Thomas Welcome Center to DART Headquarters at 1401 Pacific Avenue will be available beginning at 5:45 pm. We will have return trips to the church available at 7:00 pm, 7:30 pm, and 8:00 pm. The meeting is expected to conclude at 8 pm. For planning purposes, please let Karl Schwarz know if you plan to join us by emailing him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please indicate how many plan to attend along with you (if any). Come as you are able.
If you have not done so, please read and sign the petition supporting a subway for the second DART line rather than a street level line.
Thank you for your continued support!
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