By Arden Terry | DFW Newsflash | July 2021
DART held their bi-annual construction community meeting on Monday, July 19.During the presentation, people submitted questions in the chat, but only questions related to construction were answered.
Carlos Huerta, the DART community engagement representative,spoke about the current state of the Silver Line construction project.
“We have a $1.899 billion design build project going on right now,” Huerta said. “It’s 26 miles long covering seven cities; Addison, Carrollton, Coppell, Dallas, Grapevine, Plano, and Richardson. We are going to be building ten rail stations, and we will be connecting with four existing rail stations with the Green line, Orange line, Red line, and the TexRail also.
“The fourth quarter of 2024, we’re expecting to have revenue service design builds for the Silver Line about 74 percent complete, and then the Silver Line vehicle design was 100 percent complete as of last year.”
Huerta also talked about the Veloweb Hike and Bike Trail.
“Right now around 30 percent of the design package of [the trail]was completed as of July 1,” Huerta said. “In Coppell we’re going to be close to 4 miles (3.75 miles) of trail, almost 20,000 feet of trail. It’s approximately 12 feet wide, so there’s plenty of room in both directions for walking and riding your bike. Pedestrian bridges are pre-frapped metal bridges 16 feet wide.
“This construction of the trail will begin after the Silver Line goes into operation in 2024.
“We encourage you, if you have not yet already, go out to the DFW North Station and hop on the Tex Rail.That will give you the best idea of what the Silver Line vehicle will be as far as the experience, the noise, and the impacts to the area.
“We’re really happy with the art and design committee,” Huerta said. “When they worked with [the station], the mosaics, and the columns, the artist did a great job with the design of all this. I think we’re going to be happy with the overall look and the connection with the past, present, and future theme.
“For the most part, we’re going to have folks walking up to this station, and a lot of transit-oriented development in this area. We hope to do some more outreach in that area once folks [start] coming back to the buildings.As far as businesses, workers, and entertainment, it’s a real hot entertainment hot spot in the Cypress Waters area.”
DART also offers an education outreach program for schools located close to the rail line.
“We have identified 20 or so schools along the corridor that are within walking proximity to the Silver Line. We’re trying to get those schools first,” Huerta said. “We have a very aggressive outreach program with our transit education program. Not only do we talk about safety, we’re going to talk about other aspects of the DART system. We want DART to be a good neighbor.
“We’re updating our curriculum right now. We’re reordering our curriculum program for all grade levels or different types of grade levels. We can do career days and virtual career day programs.”