DART Pumpkin

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Dear Mr Gary C. Thomas,

I have a car because it is a basic necessity in Dallas. I use my car to go to work, go grocery shopping and do most things. I also live a 5 minute walk from the Forest Lane DART station. Weather permitting and when I’m not in a hurry, I’ll take the DART Rail to go out on the weekend. Especially in combination with my bicycle, I can get basically anywhere I want to go on the train and don’t have to worry about parking or driving drunk. Win Win.

Here’s the only problem with this plan. The train stops running at 12:15ish, even on the weekend, and I become a “DART pumpkin”.  But then it starts again around 3:30am? Come on now. Those three hours in between are really important for those of us who enjoy the nightlife in our fine city.

Help me avoid driving drunk or paying $40 for a taxi. Just one train an hour would do the trick, maybe a train 1:00am and at 2:30am. Please don’t tell me it’s a money issue. One train and one person could do the job.

Hope my suggestions are heard. Thanks!

PS: We NEED a East-West route on the North side of town but apparently the Cotton Belt line won’t start being built until 2025 (if at all)! I hope to see it in my lifetime then.

RESPONSE:

Mr. Bernstein, thank you for taking the time to send me your note.  Also, let me thank you for riding DART!

While there are some cost considerations, the primary reason that we don’t run train service during those early morning hours is so we can perform required maintenance tasks on the rail corridors.  As you are certainly aware, there is quite a bit of rail traffic throughout the day and the early morning time allows us to take care of the maintenance along the corridors without the concerns associated with an active rail.  
 
As our region continues to grow and develop, we will continue to evaluate our service and opportunities to serve people’s transportation needs in the most efficient and economic way.
 
Thanks again,
Gary Thomas
ME:
I really appreciate the you taking the time reply Gary. Glad to hear it’s not just about the $$. Looking forward to the Oak Cliff Trolley and the Orange line making it to the airport!
RESPONSE: 
Me too!  The orange line will be open to the airport later this year.  It is scheduled for December 2014, but we are trending early.  Stay tuned for the exact date.  The streetcar is also very exciting for multiple reasons.  It is a US manufactured vehicle and the first in the US that will dual mode, both battery and overhead  trolley wire.  Of course the “last mile” connectivity to Oak Cliff and Bishop Arts is critical as well.

 
Thanks for your comments and interest
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