NORTH TEXAS (CBSDFW.COM) – DART will begin charging some train riders a parking fee at the Parker Road Station in Plano and North Carrollton/Frankford Station. But the fee is just for those who live outside those cities.
Rail passenger Leeann Phelps told KRLD NewsRadio 1080 that she can’t afford the new fees and will have to start driving. “It’s going to be a loss of a convenience for me, because it’s so convenient to take the train to get downtown, to not have to fight the traffic, gas prices,” said Phelps, who lives in McKinney but works in downtown Dallas to Baylor Hospital.
The cost to park and ride will be $2.00 a day or $40 a month.
For Phelps the fees just don’t add up and she’d rather deal with traffic and high gas prices. “It’s not gonna be as much as paying $40 a week to park, plus your $20 a week for your train ticket,” she said.
Despite the additional cost for some riders Morgan Lyons with DART says traveling by rail is still a good deal. “Transit’s an incredible value when you look at gas prices still around $3.75 [or] four bucks,” he said.
Lyons says there are issues to resolve before imposing the new fee. “Maybe there’s a hanging tag. Maybe there’s a sticker or something like that. We’ve been looking at other systems.”
The next step for DART is to hire a contractor who will handle the parking fees.
Allen resident Rob Coach rides the rail from Parker Road because there isn’t a station in his city. He says he’ll just have to adjust his morning routine. “I’ll get my wife to drop me off, because I also don’t believe in paying for parking on this kind… a system like this.”
DART officials say if people don’t want to pay to park at the Parker Road Station they can drive to the Bush Turnpike Station and for those taking the North Carrollton/Frankford Station they can use the Trinity Mills Station for free.
The yearlong trial fee is expected to begin by the end of the year.