The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) is preparing an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Dallas - Fort Worth Core Express service under a grant issued to Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) and FRA by the United States Department of Transportation. The EIS will evaluate environmental implications of route and operation alternatives for a passenger rail between the two cities which currently has rail service only by Amtrak’s limited long distance Texas Eagle. The EIS is being prepared pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) and the preparation is being managed by TxDOT. FRA is the lead federal agency providing oversight and responsibility for the final decision on project implementation.
The rail service will be by means of an as-yet undetermined technology and will establish connectivity with other transportation services in Dallas and Fort Worth, including two planned high-speed rail systems serving Dallas – Houston and Dallas –Austin – San Antonio. The final alignment has not been determined, but it is anticipated that the rail service could utilize one of a number of existing transportation corridors with other existing linear infrastructure, such as railroads, roads, and utilities. The results of the EIS will inform and support FRA’s decision on technology, route alignment, rail service station location, operational configuration and other project details.
FRA published a Notice of Intent to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) on September 5, 2014. Three public scoping meetings were held in November 2014. The public scoping comment period ended on December 15, 2014.
TxDot has information about the project and the scoping meetings on their Dallas/Fort Worth Core Express Service website.
Texas also has information on their Commission for High-Speed Rail in the Dallas/Ft. Worth Region website.
Using comments and information received during the scoping process, the initial alternative alignments will be reviewed and refined to develop the alternatives to be evaluated in detail in the Draft EIS. The Draft EIS will also include evaluation of a No Build Alternative.
Following refinement of the alternatives, technical studies will be conducted and the Draft EIS will be prepared. The Draft EIS is anticipated to be available for public review in late 2015.