Sunday, February 28, 2021

Richardson begins planning for Cotton Belt Rail Line’s impact

Proposed route for DART's Cotton Belt Rail Line (Image: DART)
Proposed route for DART’s Cotton Belt Rail Line (Image: DART)

Now that the DART Board has approved a financial plan that includes funding for the expedited construction of the Cotton Belt Rail Line, cities through which the line passes and DART have begun the work needed to meet the proposed 2022 completion date. The City Council was updated Monday regarding Richardson’s efforts as well as DART’s.

Richardson City planners have already begun studying several design components of the line in order to give timely input to DART on the City’s preferences. Elements being studied include:

  • Area rail station platforms (UT Dallas, CityLine/Bush) and how the Cotton Belt Line will interface with the Red Line
  • US 75 rail bridge
  • West Renner Road pedestrian bridge, east of Synergy Park Boulevard
  • Trail-by-Rail plans/interfaces
  • Corridor aesthetic design elements
  • Types of crossings at streets including Rutford Avenue, Custer Parkway and Alma Road

DART Board representative and former Richardson Mayor Gary Slagel was present at Monday’s work session to give remarks from DART. He reported that DART is conducting a parallel study along with Richardson’s and that DART staff will be working with neighborhoods and cities to bring information to the DART Board.

3 COMMENTS

  1. I would like to know how the rail will cross through the neighborhoods where there are seven, mostly elementary schools. What is it going to take to get the DART board to realize this is a dangerous situattion to our children and a nightmare for north/south traffic. The fist time a child is killed or injured by one of these DART trains, I hope the DART board will be sued because we have pleaded for this to be constructed properly, overhead or underground, not a street level. How is the DART going to cross Ohio, Coit, Preston, Davenport, Brentfield, Keller Springs……there are residential homes that pay a LOT of Dallas Ciity/County Taxes, why is their input not being considered??
    Thank you.

  2. Thank you, Paula. As Scott Griggs has suggested, DART funds should be used to rescue the Dallas Police and Firefighters fund and to expand bus service for those that are transit dependent, not to build another rail through neighborhoods with young children. Write your state and Federal representatives about this issue please.

  3. I’m confused by these comments. Are trains more dangerous to children than cars? Is the city of Richardson unwilling or unable to provide appropriate barriers near elementary schools?

    I’m also confused as to why Dallas gets to weasel out of paying the full DART penny to fix its own pension screw ups, and why this should come at the expense of the cities that would presumably still pay the full penny and didn’t screw up their employee pension funds.

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