DART Southeast Corridor construction under way

A rail expansion that will lead to the doubling of DART’s rail network to more than 90 miles is underway southeast of downtown Dallas.

One of the first major construction projects on the new Green Line – which extends 27.7 miles from the Pleasant Grove section of southeast Dallas to Carrollton — is the demolition of the Deep Ellum tunnel near downtown Dallas. The tunnel, on Good-Latimer Expressway between Swiss and Gaston avenues, has long been viewed as the gateway to the popular art and entertainment district. It is being taken down in stages and filled in over a two-year period, allowing the rail line and Deep Ellum Station to be constructed at grade level in the median of the Good-Latimer. A section of the tunnel commemorating its 1930 construction will be donated to Preservation Dallas. DART also will build a special art project at the station as a reminder of the tunnel’s traditional role in the community.Deep Ellum Station, along with three other Green Line stations, Baylor, Fair Park and MLK, are scheduled to be in service by September 2009, and construction is already underway in the areas around those stations.

When complete in 2010, the Green Line will serve several regional destinations including Deep Ellum, Baylor University Medical Center, Fair Park, Victory Park, the Dallas Market Center, the UT Southwestern Medical District, Love Field Airport, and the cities of Farmers Branch and Carrollton.

A branch known as the Orange Line will extend from the Green Line in northwest Dallas to the Las Colinas Urban Center in North Irving in 2011, and to DFW International Airport by 2013. In addition, DART’s Blue Line will be extended from Garland, east to Rowlett in 2012, and south to I-20 in 2018. And a second rail line will open in the Dallas Central Business District in 2013 to accommodate the completed 93-mile system. Altogether, the rail extensions are expected to add 60,000 weekday passenger trips, essentially doubling ridership.