Cbdallas wrote:Will this actually be called the Cotton Belt line or will it be given a color based name as other DART lines.
... Cotton Belt peak headways (30 mins) are as long as the LRT weekend/off-offpeak headways.
Reading through the DEIS, sections 4 & 5 ... talk a lot about timing and coordinating CB trains to create reliable connections, with CB headway times being divisible by LRT headway times. This means passengers have a consistent connection time between modes ...
If that's all the service that's anticipated, Murphy and Wylie are unlikely in my opinion to see the value of paying into DART system membership for some time yet. CB rail service would be ending by Shiloh Road @ 14th Street, with just that one station constructed in all of DART's land east of the current north-south line that runs Red and Orange trains.
In such a case I would rather see the eastern two miles along Plano's 14th Street (from J Avenue to Shiloh Road) delivered a higher level of service by adding seats to DART's 870 bus FLEX shuttle service in the exact same area:https://www.dart.org/maps/870map.htm
When the Plano 12th Street station is constructed with transfer between Red, CB, and Orange, I actually think it would be wise even in the long run to have the Red Line trains continue north to Downtown Plano and Parker Road, but the Orange Line service run in a circle.
To be clear, I am calling for CB right of way to simply become part of the Orange Line, and we would then model whether the "costs" of less-than-30-minute headways (what was planned as peak frequency for CB trains) are compensated by ridership, but from Richardson's perspective, it's all benefit, not cost. I use Richardson as an example because CityLine's riders would now have one-seat service on a loop
reaching DFW much more frequently (than twice an hour) and via either UT-D or
DTD as the rider preferred.
Here's how a train could run from CityLine station to DFW Airport, direct without need of a hop up to Plano to transfer, even without employing for that purpose the vast NCX flyover with ess-curved approach ramp which it is certainly Richardson's right as DART members to want --
Should DART by any means link the Terminal A track on through to DFW North, then build a flying junction north of Plano 12th Street when that station is constructed, then the Orange Line trains could head to DFW using DART's existing crossing of US75 next to Collin Creek.*
Very few North American cities, even the densest few with "hub and spoke" passenger rail networks, have invested in a ring linking the spokes. Most transit lines have a few "insertion points" where extra trains can be added or removed in one direction or the other. But we have already basically planned and environmentally approved an entire wheel or ring without planning one.
From a systemwide perspective, you probably capture some new operational efficiencies for inserting and removing trainsets, but you definitely
unlock new future trip time and transfer efficiencies, when you have a bidirectional wheel of transfers for new spokes to tie into.
* The frontage road down from Plano Parkway on south toward Renner Road could hopefully get grade separation from the tracks if needed, but there is a crossing gate there already for the time being: https://goo.gl/maps/B1U6tGrSB6t
This five month old streetview shows a lot of frontage road construction going on around it.
The plan discussed in this post would require putting a second track at grade exactly beside the first CB one, in lieu of the big flyover (hat tip to TheOverdog six months back: https://www.cor.net/home/showdocument?id=23137
pp. 12-13 show the flyover)
Thanks for reading!