February 24, 2017 - TRA Newswire -

The Regional Transportation Council of the North Central Texas Council of Governments has approved a measure to backstop the continuation of the environmental impact statement for the Dallas-Fort Worth Core Express, a proposed high-speed rail line that would link Dallas, Arlington and Fort Worth to other destinations.

At issue is the September deadline to spend money allocated by the federal government
as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

Photo- Getty Images

Originally funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, the Environmental Impact Statement is not expected to be complete by the deadline, and the RTC wants to ensure work on the project can move forward.The RTC has authorized up to $3 million toward the continuation of the environmental process.

The expenditure could be significantly less than what was approved if Congress extends the ARRA deadline. This is the latest action by the North Central Texas Council of Governments in its ongoing effort to facilitate the arrival of high-speed trains to the Dallas-Fort Worth area. Texas Central Railway is in the development phase of high speed trains to connect Dallas to Houston while the Texas-Oklahoma Passenger Rail Study (TOPRS) is expected to release its Tier I EIS soon on how passenger rail should be developed in or near the I-35 corridor. Both Texas Central and TOPRS would funnel passengers through the Dallas-Arlington-Fort Worth proposed concept.

NCTCOG has selected firms for three high-speed rail station-area concepts. Gateway Planning will develop a plan for the Fort Worth station, while WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff handle the Arlington planning and Lockwood, Andrews and Newnam (LAN) studies the Dallas station area.

These studies will inform the EIS and ensure regional connectivity with planned high-speed rail lines serving the Dallas-to-Houston and Oklahoma City-to-South Texas corridors.

DFW is seen as a top candidate for high-speed rail. NCTCOG hosted an industry forum last summer where it was determined many firms around the world are interested in developing the Core Express project.

For more information on high-speed rail, visit www.nctcog.org/hsr.