DALLAS — Federal Transit Administrator Peter Rogoff joined state and local officials for the opening of the Dallas Area Rapid Transit’s (DART) Green Line.
The 24-mile northwest-southeast extension to the city’s light rail system was completed six months ahead of schedule and, thanks to the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, under budget.
“DART finished this project early and the Recovery Act gave them the resources they needed to bring it in under budget,” Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said. “The Green Line will increase access to the downtown business district, provide an alternative to driving on congested roadways and give a boost to the economy.”
In 2006, the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) agreed to provide $700 million over a seven year period for the project. To date, DART has received $435 million from the federal government, including a $78 million payment that was made ahead of schedule under a provision in the Recovery Act.
“DART continues to demonstrate visionary leadership for transit, delivering the project ahead of schedule and under budget,” said Administrator Rogoff, who was in town today for the grand opening. “The opening of the Green Line will be a true game-changer in Dallas, connecting people and places like never before.”
The 24-mile project consists of two federally funded segments that extend northwest and southeast from the Dallas central business district.
The southeast segment runs 10 miles from the Transitway Mall in the Dallas Central Business District to Buckner Boulevard. The northwest segment extends 11 miles from Victory Station to the city of Farmers Branch. An additional three miles of the northwest segment from Farmers Branch to Carrollton was built with local funds.
The project adds 16 new stations, 10 park-and-ride lots accommodating 2,700 parking spaces, and 18 new high-capacity light rail vehicles. An additional 38 DART light rail vehicles were also redesigned for use on the line to increase passenger capacity.
DART said it anticipates the new line will generate nearly 30,000 daily trips by the end of the first year of operation.