September 13, 2016 – Dallas Morning News –

Lee M. Kleinman – Dallas City Council –

The Cotton Belt is good for Dallas.

The proposed east-west commuter line that would connect Dallas, Richardson and Plano with Dallas Fort Worth International Airport and, ultimately, Fort Worth, would help not only those people living in towns that are members of Dallas Area Rapid Transit, and not only those who actually ride the train. This line benefits everyone.

That’s important because as Dallas Area Rapid Transit considers advancing the Cotton Belt delivery date from 2035 to 2022, critics have put the agency on the defensive.

“We’re hearing how DART is going to make this less painful, but what does it do for us?” I heard one person say at a DART community meeting about the project. As with any transformative infrastructure project, there are many people who object to its development. In this case, some Dallas home owners along the existing rail corridor are well organized and have formed the Cotton Belt Concerned Citizens.

Here’s why everyone in Dallas and the northern suburbs should cheer for the Cotton Belt line.

Read more: http://www.dallasnews.com/opinion/latest-columns/20160913-why-north-texas-needs-the-cotton-belt-commuter-train-line.ece