Please see the responses to your questions as of 8/8/19. We will show in-progress design as it becomes available.
Q 1. Why did the cotton belt capital budget increase $108 million from $1.135 billion to $1.243 billion?
A The project cost increased by $108 million to accommodate double-tracking along the entire alignment.
Q 2. How do you calculate the ridership forecast of 2.054 million annually?
A Ridership is forecasted at 5,630 daily boarding's at the beginning of revenue service. The calculation is 5,630 daily boarding's x 365 days/year. This annualizes to 2.054 million.
Q 2-1. Is the 5,630 per day rides the first day of ridership?
A Yes, ridership is forecasted at 5,630 daily boarding's at the beginning of revenue service, including the first day of ridership.
Q 2-2. Do you take the 5,630 per day at beginning of revenue service and annualize this number?
A Yes, ridership is forecasted at 5,630 daily boarding's at the beginning of revenue service. The calculation is 5,630 daily boarding's x 365 days/ year. This annualizes to 2.054 million.
Q 2-3. Do you have an annual estimate of ridership using forecast for the entire year and not one data point?
A Ridership is forecasted at 5,630 daily boarding’s at the beginning of revenue service. This annualizes to 2.054 million.
Q 2-4. Can you please tell me why this 2.054 million annual rides is different compared to the O&M section that shows 1.35 million annual rides?
A The O&M plan and O&M cost estimate in the FEIS was based on 10% level of design. As design progresses, the O&M plan and O&M cost estimate will be updated. The 2.054 million annual rides represent the current forecast.
Q 2-5. Your comment says many riders will take one-way trips to DFW Airport. Can you park overnight at DART stations?
A Yes, overnight parking at DART stations is permitted.
Q 3. Can you please answer this question for the executive committee? This question was not answered. The executive committee is the executive staff per the website. This is similar to DEF14A for a public company.
A The executive committee for DART, established by its enabling statute, is the board of directors. The board of directors are paid $50 per board meeting. Executive compensation is not explicitly highlighted in DART financials.
Q 4. Can you please explain how this project makes any economic sense? There was no answer provided.
A As stated previously on 5/21/19, public transportation does not operate at a profit. Public transportation generates externalities such as the beneficial impact of congestion mitigation, improved air quality, and economic development. The project’s primary purpose is to provide passenger rail connections that will improve mobility, accessibility and system linkages to major employment, population and activity centers in the northern portion of the DART service area and support sustainable growth, local and regional land use visions, economic development and tourism. Goals for the project include:
· Enhance corridor mobility and accessibility
o Provide connectivity to existing and planned passenger rail facilities.
o Provide transportation investments serving future population and employment growth.
o Improve access to existing and emerging major activity centers, including connectivity to DFW Airport.
o Increase transit usage for existing and new riders.
o Improve access to transit.
o Provide cost-effective options.
· Reduce Vehicle Miles of Travel
o Increase transit capacity and improve travel times through more reliable transit.
o Reduce air quality impacts.
· Promote economic development and sustainable land use patterns
o Enhance employment opportunities.
o Encourage economic development opportunities.
o Promote sustainable and livable development opportunities.
o Promote consistency with regional and local transportation and comprehensive plans.
o Coordinate initiatives for land use development and redevelopment.
· Provide an environmentally-sensitive transit investment
o Minimize negative impacts to the community.
o Minimize negative impacts to the environment.
o Minimize negative impacts to natural, social and economic environments.