Is the proposed downtown Dallas high-speed rail station a “massive game changer” as the head of developer Matthews Southwest has stated?
An interesting question. The creation of a high-speed rail line between Dallas and Houston will certainly be a big change for the region. And, for that matter, would put the high-speed rail offerings in most other parts of the country to shame — a bit amusing considering that in the oversimplified rhetoric of modern politics, Texas is often portrayed as being anti “progress.”
Estimates that the rail line could bring billions of dollars of investment into the region no doubt have played a part in why the potential line has gotten a fair amount of support so far, of course. Considering that high-speed rail is, in my opinion, an excellent choice for most parts of the country, it’s good to see support apparently growing.
Recent comments from the Matthews Southwest President, Jack Matthews, were made in an interview with the Dallas Business Journal:
This will be a massive game changer for the city of Dallas and the city of Houston. This would put us in a different orbit than any other city in the country, linking up two of the top cities in the country.
You could go to Houston to have breakfast and be back here by lunch. It would only add to the economies of both cities.
No arguments there. And exactly the reasons why I am such a strong supporter of most high-speed rail projects (despite the significant issues with graft and corruption in some recent proposals/projects). With such significant benefits, what’s the real argument against them after all?
The recent Dallas Business Journal article provides more:
Texas Central Railway has proposed a 200-mph bullet train to connect Dallas to Houston with a 90-minute trip. The Dallas high-speed rail station would serve as a destination for the North Texas business community to connect to the south Texas city.
The two sites — one atop Interstate 30 near the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center and the other south of Interstate 30 between Lamar Street and Riverfront Street — would quickly become one of Dallas’ hottest transit-oriented development plays, which could become a catalyst for thousands of square feet of office space, retail and restaurant space, residences and perhaps a hotel.
If Matthews Southwest wins the bid — which it’s been working on for ~6 months — it’ll market the first rail project for the developer. The company does have experience with large projects, though, including the Dallas Convention Center.
If the proposed project makes its way through the federal environmental approval process, construction would be expected to begin in 2017. With the aim (as stated by the Texas Central Railway) being for the train line to be running by 2021.
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