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Push For Fort Worth Passenger Train Pilot Project

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TARRANT COUNTY (CBSDFW.COM) - There’s talk of creating passenger train service to Alliance Airport in Fort Worth and then possibly on to other points north of the city.

Michael Morris, the Transportation Director of the North Central Texas Council of Governments (NCTCOG), wants to try running passenger trains from downtown and he wants to fast track a pilot project.

“I believe it’s cheaper to try it than to spend millions of dollars studying it and seeing if in fact it would work or not,” said Morris. “Let’s try it for six months and see.”

Morris said a lack of public transportation and increasing traffic congestion may hamper further business development.

“If we’re gonna lose other employers because we don’t have a good enough accessibility and mobility, or too much congestion, then I think we need to take an active role in trying to do something different,” said Morris, who also thinks the project will help communities, “We have people in the center-city of Fort Worth that desperately need work. We’ve got employers in the Alliance corridor that desperately need employees.”

There are some 30,000 employees in the Alliance area.

Members of the NCTCOG believe the project will be so successful it could eventually be extended to Texas Motor Speedway.

“It’s not like big events aren’t occurring at the Motor Speedway. Why couldn’t we also be taking that concept and provide rail service to the Motor Speedway, on the heels of the Super Bowl where we provided rail service to the Super Bowl?” asked Morris.

Morris says they’ll only have to provide the engines and car, which in the case of the Super Bowl were Trinity Railway Express trains, and get permission from Burlington Northern and Santa Fe to use their tracks.

There is no timetable for the proposed pilot program.

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