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#1 AndyN

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Posted 22 October 2009 - 10:39 PM

I'm sure everyone has seen some of the news about how oversold the DART light rail service to Fair Park was on the Texas-OU weekend. I think I would lay blame both on DART, State Fair and other organizers for excessively touting the rail as the way to get to the game, but I think some blame lays on an uneducated public that doesn't know how to ride. Either way, I don't think DART can meet the unrealistic expectation that they purchase a bunch of additional equipment to handle occasional crush crowds. Light rail is just one tool in the toolbox that must be coordinated with buses and private automobiles. I hope that those people responsible for the Fort Worth streetcar circulator keep this incident in mind when planning for service to large venues that may be on the new system. Decent summary from the Fort Worth Star-Telegram:


After State Fair fiasco, transit agencies face 16-month deadline to get faith in system back on track
By GORDON DICKSON
gdickson@star-telegram.com

Jeff Scoggins of Fort Worth says he has taken his last train ride in North Texas.

"I won’t put my fate in the public transportation system’s hands anymore," Scoggins, 34, said this week, recounting how he spent three hours stranded on a train platform and crammed into an overcrowded rail car last weekend getting to the Texas-OU football game in Dallas.

"I won’t be fooled twice."

That’s bad news for 2011 Super Bowl planners. They will be relying on the region’s mass transit system to ferry up to 50,000 people to events in Arlington, Dallas, Fort Worth, Irving and possibly Grapevine. Failure at any point along the transit grid could stain Dallas-Fort Worth’s standing as a host city for decades to come.

After the Red River Rivalry fiasco, when several thousand riders missed part or all of the game because of overcrowding and confusion on the rail system, North Texas officials say they must mend their transportation reputation before the Big Game, in less than 16 months.

"It’s true that often in public transit you have one chance to get the customer, and it’s no different than opening a new restaurant," said Michael Morris, transportation director for the North Central Texas Council of Governments. "Our hope is the riders won’t have one bad experience and not return to our transportation system."

(Click article title to read rest of the story on www.startelegram.com)
Www.fortwortharchitecture.com

#2 cbellomy

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Posted 23 October 2009 - 12:12 AM

I'm a little surprised DART didn't see this coming. Ridership on the Green Line to get to the Fair on *Monday* was very high. They could and should have warned folks going to the game that capacity getting to Fair Park on Saturday was going to be limited.

I'm a transportation neophyte, but it seems to me that this also illustrates the problem with serving major destinations with only one line -- the choke point is extremely narrow. Of course, Jerryworld has zero lines running to it, so I don't really see how the Super Bowl is going to be a comparable event for rail.

#3 Electricron

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Posted 23 October 2009 - 09:48 PM

There''s no way light rail trains will be going to Arlington in 16 months. They're talking about using TRE commuter trains on UP tracks. The only stations being used for the Super Bowl by the TRE will be FWITC and Union Station, with two tracks available for trains at both stations, and a temporary platform presumably on the north track somewhere in Arlington near Cowboy's Stadium. There will no no other stations, therefore they'll be like Expresses to Arlington. With up to 400 passengers per bi-level car, I'm pretty sure TRE could move many passengers to Arlington from both cities. How many is the question?

TRE Fleet configuration
6 locomotives
10 bi-level coaches
7 cab cars

Assuming they use every bi-level car and left one locomotive as a spare, TRE could have 5 trains running on Super Bowl weekend on the UP line.
Loco - coach - coach - cab - cab (1600 passengers)
Loco - coach - coach - cab - cab (1600 passengers)
Loco - coach - coach - cab (1200 passengers)
Loco - coach - coach - cab (1200 passengers)
Loco - coach - coach - cab (1200 passengers)

That's 6800 passengers total for one trip to Arlington (a half hour after leaving Dallas or Forth Worth).
It'll take another half hour to reach Dallas or Forth Worth again, and another half hour to return to Arlington when another 6800 passengers would arrive in Arlington total of an hour). Again, another hour will elapse before the trains could reach Arlington again.
Therefore, in two and a half hours from each train initial start, each train could deliver 3 train loads in Arlington.
6800 x 3 = 20,400 passengers in three hours is what these trains could deliver. It'll take slightly less time to load the same number of fans onto the trains in Arlington, but as long to get them to Dallas or Forth Worth......

Will 20,400 fans be enough? No one knows yet.

If the TRE can not get access to the UP mainline that weekend, they shouldn't look at running buses from the TRE line to Cowboy's Stadium. At 47 passengers per bus, they will need to move 435 bus loads the 6 miles between the TRE line and the Stadium.
20,400 / 47 = 434+

To add, 10 of the 13 TRE Budd cars will be leased to DCTA. I'm assuming DCTA will be using some of them that weekend, the rest will be needed by the TRE to service its normal line.

#4 Jamie

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Posted 24 October 2009 - 03:57 PM

QUOTE (Electricron @ Oct 23 2009, 10:48 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
...With up to 400 passengers per bi-level car, I'm pretty sure TRE could move many passengers to Arlington from both cities. How many is the question...


Thanks of the analysis. Interesting calculations. A few comments:

1. The actual seats per car on the TRE can range from 136 to 162 (according to wiki). The 400 passegers per car on the TRE is near "crush capacity" which (interestingly) Bombardier no longer advertizes as part of their specs on the website (unless they moved it somewhere).
If I were a planner I would never allow more than 200 per car for such a trip. All it would take is one grade crossing accident to strand a train full of 1600 people for an hour or more to create another "fiasco".
As pessimistic as I am by nature, I would assume the worse case scenario and develop a contingency plan accordingly.

2. The Bombardier bi-level cars are basically standard and additional cars could possibly be borrowed from other agencies. Salt Lake City, Seattle-Tacoma, and others have done this in the past.

3. Jerryworld is about 3/4 mile from the tracks. Not everyone can walk that far. Perhaps Six Flags could rent out their tractor-trams for a special event? In any case, Division Street should probably be closed between Collins and Stadium drive due to the hoards of pedestrians.

#5 RD Milhollin

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Posted 24 October 2009 - 11:30 PM

How many more people than seats will be allowed in the new stadium for the Super-Dooper Bowl? I don't think that the stadium management, team management and owner, the Arlington police, or the fire marshall will allow a repeat of the opening game free-for-all where standing room only tickets were oversold. As much as I advocate transit that game was successfully loaded and unloaded using personal autos and express buses. The people living and doing business along the neighboring streets were inconvenienced (or shut down) for several hours, but perhaps that is the price of progress (sarcasm). The ideas of running trains from the urban centers and providing shuttle services (other than bicycabs) from the tracks to the stadium are all good, but not vital to bringing in the crowds and then dispersing them. This is a useful exercise in planning, but would not seem to have real-life applications for this event.

#6 Keller Pirate

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Posted 26 October 2009 - 07:33 AM

PP beat me by a day with the analysis on the need for rail transportation to the Super Bowl. I have to pretty much agree with everything he said about the game.

If you consider for a moment, most Super Bowls have been held in Southern cities that have not had any public transportation beyond busses. I went to two at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, which is in a residential neighborhood and there were no problems getting the 100,000+ people and Michael Jackson to the game, on busses.

The Super Bowl is like a golf tournament, instead of tailgaters, most of the parking is given over to corporate tents and entertainment venues. The corporate folks are luxury coached in hours before the game to take part in the festivities. There will be a few individuals that might get a plain old ticket and the T bus from the T&P station will work fine. I suspect 20,000 TRE riders to the game is a high number.

I do think the TRE could play an important role in the week leading up to the game as people shuttle between events in Dallas and Ft Worth. I could see several thousand folks in Ft Worth heading down to the station all trying to get to Dallas at once for an event. smile.gif



#7 FoUTASportscaster

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Posted 26 October 2009 - 06:50 PM

The problem last week was a combination of riders and DART. But before anyone goes off on DART, it was their first time. Things that are the same from the first time as the most recent time mean there has been no improvement and it is rare.

Riders should know that you don't try to get to the game 1 hour beforehand. Some also could have used alternate means, such as walking to or using a bike.

If Mr. Scoggins doesn't want to spend three hours on the train, fine next time he can spend 3 hours by car.

The car that had a breaker trip caused a 12-minute delay on that particular train, but the repercussions were felt for hours as the system worked to recover from the backup. When that train broke down, it caused all trains on the transit mall to stall, losing their windows.

I think DART could have done some things different, but hindsight is 20/20.
There were two choke points that day, Victory Station, both because the TRE was dumping passengers, and the parking lots operators by Victory Station were charging for parking. The other was Pearl Station, where the Red and Blue Lines were dumping off passengers.

The first thing I would do is to run express trains from the terminus at Parker Road and Downtown Garland Stations and make regular stops all the way to Cityplace. From there it doesn't stop until Fair Park, then heads to the S&I yard. That would alleviate the choke point at Pearl partially-mostly, as some would still use the existing lines.

Similarly, run an express train from 8th and Corinth through the S&I yard to Fair Park or better yet MLK Station.

I would see if UP would negotiate and let the TRE run on its tracks for that day and setup a temporary station on the east side of Fair Park. If that were to happen, that entirely eliminates the Victory choke point. If not, have some passengers get off at Victory and the rest at Union and run a special event train from Union to FP or MLK through the S&I yard.

When returning home, the TRE needs more frequent scheduling. If someone misses the train for overcrowding, an hour and a half wait is killer.

Advertise that people are going to the State Fair, come early before the game and stay late after and enjoy the atmosphere.

Buses would be near useless. The seating capacity is roughly 45, standing room is about 65-70. To carry the same amount of LRT passengers, there would need to be 5 buses for every one train. Those buses would then sit in traffic, taking at least an hour to make the round trip. So if the trains are running once every ten minutes (which I hope it would be closer to 5), there would need to be 30 buses to carry the capacity of six trains. If the other options are in place, buses become a mute point.

#8 Electricron

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Posted 26 October 2009 - 09:06 PM

DART reports over 90,000 train riders that Saturday, three times normal Saturday ridership. Let's assume there are 30,000 regular riders, that means 60,000 extra riders were going to the Sate Fair, not all of them specifically for the football game.

A train tripping a circuit breaker did mess up the sequencing of the trains through downtown Dallas. Another significant cause for delays not expected was the 5 minutes it took to get all the passengers off the over-crowded trains at Fair Park. The idea that DART could decrease headways to shorter than 5 minutes can't be done because that's how long it takes to all the passengers off the trains.

At 4,000 rider per hour per rail corridor, there's no way the Green Line can get that many riders to Fair Park in three hours prior to kickoff, or in three hours after the game ends. If Downtown Dallas is where the attraction is, DART can get 20,000 riders per hour there over 5 different rail corridors (northern and southern legs of the Blue/Red/Green lines counted separately) today, and 25,000 when the northern leg of the Green Line is completed. When the Orange Line enters service, up to 30,000 riders per hour can reach downtown Dallas.

Fair Park isn't located in downtown Dallas, where all the rail lines converge. It's located on the southern leg of the Green Line. DART's rail system wasn't designed specifically for getting hoards of passengers to Fair Park, it's designed to get lots of weekday commuters to downtown Dallas to work and back home.

I'm sure DART can find some way to increase capacity to Fair Park in the future. Interlining lines with Special trains will help some, but obviously using the alternate route through the maintenance yard would help most.....

#9 FoUTASportscaster

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Posted 09 June 2010 - 05:01 PM

On December 6 of this year, the Green Line will open. While that isn't news to some, what may be is that the Orange Line will begin as well.

The route will run from Bachman Station to Lawnview during non-peak hours and from Bachman to Parker Road during peak hours. Peak hour Red Line trains that had previously terminated at the Cedars will be converted to Orange Line trains, meaning the transit mall will see no new increases in trains in the peak direction and six new trains in the non-peak direction. That will max out the capacity of the downtown transit mall. Any new rail line would need to either have a new downtown routing or terminate at an outlying rail station.

#10 Electricron

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Posted 10 June 2010 - 08:56 AM

QUOTE (FoUTASportscaster @ Jun 9 2010, 06:01 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
On December 6 of this year, the Green Line will open. While that isn't news to some, what may be is that the Orange Line will begin as well. That will max out the capacity of the downtown transit mall. Any new rail line would need to either have a new downtown routing or terminate at an outlying rail station.


I'm not so sure DART will max out the capacity of the downtown transit corridor, upcoming cuts for DART caused by the bad economy and poor sales tax revenues may change 12 trains per hour per line to 5 trains per hour per line. (A train every 5 minutes to a train every 12 minutes). With 4 rail lines going through the downtown transit corridor, and using a train every 12 minutes for each line, that's a train every 3 minutes in each direction coming from all the lines. That's a decision that hasn't been made by the DART Board yet, but some cuts in service should be expected.

My chart for number of trains per hour and headways between trains
5 trains per hour = 12 minute headways between trains
6 trains per hour = 10 minute headways between trains
8 trains per hour = 7.5 minute headways between trains
10 trains per hour = 6 minute headways between trains
12 trains per hour = 5 minute headways between trains
15 trains per hour = 4 minute headways between trains
20 trains per hour = 3 minute headways between trains
24 trains per hour = 2.5 minute headways between trains
30 trains per hour = 2 minute headways between trains

I think DART is looking at increasing headways to 10 or 12 minutes on each line, routing the Orange line northeast or southeast to decrease headways when needed.


#11 FoUTASportscaster

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Posted 10 June 2010 - 09:38 AM

Dude, 10 minute headways on 4 line reaches the capacity of the transit mall.

#12 Electricron

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Posted 10 June 2010 - 04:00 PM

QUOTE (FoUTASportscaster @ Jun 10 2010, 10:38 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Dude, 10 minute headways on 4 line reaches the capacity of the transit mall.

I agree with 10 minute headways on each line if the downtown street mall is designed for a train every 2.5 minutes. But, it's possible DART may cut light rail services back to 12 minute or more headways for each line to reduce more costs. That's the decision the DART board will make later.

#13 Electricron

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Posted 01 January 2011 - 09:32 AM

But, it's possible DART may cut light rail services back to 12 minute or more headways for each line to reduce more costs. That's the decision the DART board will make later.

DART's board has decided to reduce headways to every 15 minutes on every line during the rush. That's 4 trains an hour in each direction.
In the downtown streetmall, with 4 lines sharing the tracks, that's a train every 3 minutes and 45 seconds.
Where 3 lines share the tracks, that's a train every 5 minutes.
Where 2 lines share the tracks, that's a train every 7 and a half minutes.

#14 RD Milhollin

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 10:51 AM

DART rail line to open DFW Airport Station in August; ahead of schedule and under budget!

 

http://www.star-tele...w-airports.html



#15 RenaissanceMan

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 11:04 AM

Meanwhile in Fort Worth...

#16 Volare

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 01:36 PM

Vote NO for continuing the CCPD! May 10, 2014



#17 RenaissanceMan

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 01:50 PM

Vote NO for continuing the CCPD! May 10, 2014


Is there a spot to vote Yes for transportation district?

#18 RD Milhollin

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 08:42 PM

Wouldn't that have to come after the vote on the CCPD? There would be no "overhead" for a Transportation District unless the 1/2 cent tax increment was vacated by the Crime Control and Prevention District so it could be used for transportation. Other taxes (property most likely) would also probably have to be raised to cover the loss of revenue by the police department, unless they could continue doing their job but with fewer toys. I don't live in Fort Worth proper, but would easily vote to eliminate my city's CCPD in favor of improved transportation. In the case of Haltom City it would most likely take the form of joining The T with a couple of bus lines across the town and the hope for a station on the TEXRail when complete.



#19 Volare

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Posted 25 March 2014 - 10:52 PM

It's the chicken or egg thing. But we can't even talk about funding transportation or anything else until we get rid of the CCPD bloat.



#20 RenaissanceMan

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Posted 26 March 2014 - 06:59 AM

It's the chicken or egg thing. But we can't even talk about funding transportation or anything else until we get rid of the CCPD bloat.


Generally, I agree. But the truth is that once taxes are lowered, you have a very tough time convincing voters to accept a new one (even if it simply and almost immediately takes taxes back to the original level). I just can't wrap my head around how you actually get it through.

#21 renamerusk

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Posted 29 March 2014 - 03:30 PM

DART rail line to open DFW Airport Station in August; ahead of schedule and under budget!

 

http://www.star-tele...w-airports.html

 

30 Year Anniversary:

 

http://www.dallasnew...owing-pains.ece



#22 BlueMound

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Posted 21 April 2014 - 11:38 PM

Dart might cut services if federal fund becomes insolvent.
http://m.bizjournals...if-federal.html

#23 renamerusk

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Posted 10 July 2014 - 11:15 AM

Dallas's DFW connection is complete, 4 months ahead of schedule, and under budget...

 

http://blogs.dallaso...conventions.php

 

(sigh)

 

 

Just how does one store their luggage aboard a DART train?  I would imagine that the trains will have more of an impact upon those who are employed at the airport than those who are taking or arriving on a flight.



#24 PeopleAreStrange

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Posted 10 July 2014 - 01:28 PM

Considering DFW is one of the world's largest airports, I would imagine there are a lot of people employed there.


- Dylan


#25 elpingüino

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Posted 10 July 2014 - 03:08 PM

Considering DFW is one of the world's largest airports, I would imagine there are a lot of people employed there.

 

Absolutely. According to yesterday's Dallas Morning News article, 143,000 people either work at the airport or are based out of it.



#26 RD Milhollin

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Posted 11 July 2014 - 10:00 AM

The S-T editorial page weighs in on the FW vs D rail thingie, tying it to the hotel/Convention Center revamp issue:

 

http://www.star-tele...fw-airport.html

 

IMO if The-T is able to get this thing going the ride from downtown Fort Worth should be faster than the DART ride to downtown Dallas given a straighter path and fewer stations along the way; maybe even a smoother ride given the heavy rail format vs DART LR. All that aside, Dallas has a definite jump on Fort Worth in this department, at least 4 years, and that appears to be a minimum. Even then is is justified to assume no holiday or Sunday service, and long times between trains if the TRE is the model it will follow. That is a long time to wait for a train.



#27 PeopleAreStrange

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Posted 11 July 2014 - 05:29 PM

You would think TEX Rail from DFW and FW would be quicker than the Orange Line between DFW and D with fewer stops and curves.

 

TEX Rail's website says 55 mins from DFW to T&P - about the same time as DFW to DT Dallas.


- Dylan


#28 Austin55

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Posted 14 September 2017 - 10:14 AM

Some news on the proposed underground segment through CBD and streetcar extension

 

https://www.dallasne...ubway-streetcar






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