TEXRail currently runs 27 miles from downtown Fort Worth to Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport. The rail opened in January 2019 and has stations in Fort Worth, North Richland Hills, and Grapevine.
The proposed extension would run west along I-30 then take a turn southward near the Chisholm Trail Parkway.
Currently, the environmental analysis is being completed, which includes seeking public comment about the project and its impact. Comments can be submitted by mail, phone, or electronically through the project’s website.
In February 2020, Rep. Kay Granger (R-TX-12) announced that Trinity Metro was authorized by the Federal Transit Administration to use the $38.9 million in federal funds remaining from the original project toward completion of the extension. The original TEXRail project cost estimate was $1.034 billion, but the project was completed about $80 million under budget.
When asked about the total cost of the 2.1 mile extension, TEXRail Chief Engineer John Tipton said that the last estimates were about $179 million, but that inflation will likely impact the cost over time.
Trinity Metro is working with the city, county, and the North Central Texas Council of Governments to raise the additional funds needed for the project. The total project funding has yet to be secured.
Construction is expected to begin in early 2024, with a planned opening in the spring of 2026.
The environmental assessment currently in process considered impacts in key areas such as noise and vibration, cultural and historic resources, park land, and property acquisitions.
TEXRail expects 73 trains per day to run along the new extension.
In order to reduce the noise levels in neighborhoods and in Newby Park, a “quiet zone” will be established at the Mistletoe Boulevard crossing where horns will not be sounded as normally would be the case. Further, rail lubrication will be utilized at the turn southward near the Chisholm Trail Parkway to reduce squealing noise.
When asked about traffic increasing in the Mistletoe neighborhood due to the Southside station, the leadership team said their modeling showed the station would attract primarily pedestrian traffic.
The TEXRail commuter line was originally proposed as a measure to reduce congestion and improve connectivity in the fast-growing DFW region. The Federal Transit Administration estimated that TEXRail would average 8300 riders per day or about 250,000 riders per month.
The latest numbers available show 37,504 riders for September 2021 and 304,545 riders through the first nine months of the year. Tarrant County has about 2.1 million residents.
Disclosure: Unlike almost every other media outlet, The Texan is not beholden to any special interests, does not apply for any type of state or federal funding, and relies exclusively on its readers for financial support. If you’d like to become one of the people we’re financially accountable to, click here to subscribe.
Kim Roberts is a reporter for the Texan in the DFW metroplex area where she has lived for over twenty years. She has a Juris Doctor from Baylor University Law School and a Bachelor's in government from Angelo State University. In her free time, Kim home schools her daughter and coaches high school extemporaneous speaking and apologetics. She has been happily married to her husband for 23 years, has three wonderful children, and two dogs.