A-train (Denton County Transportation Authority)

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  A-train
DCTA A-Train Logo.png
Denton A train at Downtown Denton.JPG
A-train diesel multiple unit coaches at Downtown Denton
Overview
Type Commuter rail
System Denton County Transportation Authority
Locale Denton County, Texas
Termini Downtown Denton Transit Center
Trinity Mills Station
Stations 6
Daily ridership 2,000[1]
Website www.mya-train.com
Operation
Opening June 20, 2011
Owner DCTA
Operator(s) DCTA
Rolling stock 11 Stadler GTW 2/6
Technical
Track gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge
DCTA A-train
Downtown Denton Transit Center
Texas Loop 288.svg Loop 288
Medpark Station
Lewisville Lake
Highland Village/Lewisville Lake Station
Old Town Station
Hebron Station
Green Line to North Carrollton/Frankford Station
President George Bush Turnpike
Trinity Mills Station
Green Line to Buckner Station

The A-train is a 21 miles (34 km) commuter rail line in Denton County, Texas, United States that parallels Interstate 35E and acts as an extension with the Dallas Area Rapid Transit Green Line at Trinity Mills Station in Carrollton. It is operated by the Denton County Transportation Authority (DCTA) and serves Denton County. It opened June 20, 2011.[2]

History[edit]

A formal Alternatives Analysis study conducted in 2004–2005, which included extensive community and citizen involvement, identified the proposed rail line as the best and most cost-effective mobility solution for Denton County and the region. It cited the impacts of projected population growth, growing safety, traffic congestion and air quality concerns, as well as the need to improve access to Denton County’s vital health care facilities and three major college and university campuses.

In May 2005, the DCTA Board of Directors approved the study’s recommendation to construct the rail alignment on east side of I-35E using an existing railroad corridor. The DCTA worked closely with the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) to meet the Federal and local regulatory requirements. In March 2008, the DCTA Board of Directors approved the Final Environmental Impact Determination that detailed the proposed measures to mitigate the environmental impacts of the rail project and the Regional Transportation Council approved funding of in August 2008.[citation needed] Federal funds were not used in the construction of the rail link.[3]

On April 4, 2011, the DCTA began tests of railcars, communications systems and signals on track between Carrollton and Lewisville Lake, with tests on the remainder of the route projected to begin later in the month,[4] though this date was later pushed back to mid-May.[5]

The A-train was opened on June 20, 2011 with celebrations at five train stations.[6]

Stations[edit]

Downtown Denton Transit Center[edit]

Located in downtown Denton, this station is bordered by Hickory and Sycamore streets (north to south) and Bell and Railroad avenues (west to east).[7] The DCTA held a ground breaking ceremony for this station on March 22, 2010.[8]

Medpark Station[edit]

Main article: Medpark Station

Located in south Denton, serving the Denton Regional Medical Center and nearby medical offices, along with Golden Triangle Mall and shuttle service to North Central Texas College's Corinth campus. Land for this station was purchased from the Medical Center on December 16, 2008 for $3.2 million.[9]

Highland Village/Lewisville Lake Station[edit]

Located in north Lewisville near Garden Ridge Road, serving the Lewisville Lake and Highland Village area.

Old Town Station[edit]

Main article: Old Town Station

Located near the Old Town district of Lewisville (its downtown area),

Hebron Station[edit]

Main article: Hebron Station

Located in south Lewisville near Hebron Parkway; this station serves several apartment complexes and warehouses as well as Lewisville's main retail district including Vista Ridge Mall. Ground was broken on this station in a ceremony held March 27, 2009.[10]

Trinity Mills Station[edit]

Main article: Trinity Mills Station

The Trinity Mills Station, part of the DART Green Line, is the southern terminus of the A-Train.

Ridership[edit]

Figures collected by the American Public Transportation Association show that 1,500 people rode the A-train on an average weekday in the third quarter of 2011.[11] As of the fourth quarter of 2012, average weekday ridership has increased to approximately 2,000 riders per day.[1] The A-Train is currently the twenty-second most-ridden commuter rail system in the country.

Rolling stock[edit]

DCTA placed an order for 11 Stadler GTW 2/6 DMUs in 2010. The first of the new trains were delivered in late 2011 for testing prior to their entry into service.[12] The full order was fulfilled by August 2012 and in September 2012, the new units replaced the Budd DMUs leased from TRE.[13]

 Class  Image  Type   Top speed   Inventory   Routes operated   Built 
 mph   km/h 
Stadler GTW 2/6 DCTA A Train.JPG Diesel Multiple Unit 75 120 11 Denton-Carrollton 2010-2012

Past Fleet[edit]

The A-Train began operations using 10 Budd RDCs leased from Trinity Railway Express, which were used until DCTA's own purpose built fleet was delivered.

 Class  Image  Type   Top speed   Inventory   Routes operated   Built 
 mph   km/h 
Budd Rail Diesel Car Lewisville Old Town DCTA.jpg Diesel Multiple Unit 75 120 10 Denton-Carrollton 1949-62

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Public Transit Ridership Report, Fourth Quarter 2012". American Public Transportation Association. Retrieved April 4, 2013. .
  2. ^ Peterson, Matt (June 20, 2011). "A-train railway begins rolling, carrying commuters from Denton to Carrollton". The Dallas Morning News. Retrieved June 20, 2011. 
  3. ^ http://www.mya-train.com/about-the-a-train/faqs/140-is-the-federal-transit-administration-involved-in-the-project
  4. ^ "DCTA to begin testing signal, communications equipment on A-train corridor". Progressive Railroading. April 4, 2011. Archived from the original on April 5, 2011. Retrieved April 5, 2011. 
  5. ^ "Denton – Dallas A-Train services to start in June". Railway Gazette International. May 16, 2011. Archived from the original on May 23, 2011. Retrieved May 17, 2011. 
  6. ^ Train stations celebrate opening of A-Train | www.pegasusnews.com | Dallas/Fort Worth
  7. ^ "Denton to hold public meeting about downtown transit center". Pegasus News. December 5, 2008. Retrieved October 5, 2009. 
  8. ^ The Denton County Transportation Authority breaks ground on the Downtown Denton Transit Center, March 22, 2010 
  9. ^ DCTA Purchases Site From Denton Regional Medical Center To Serve As Medpark Station, December 16, 2008 
  10. ^ DCTA to break ground on Hebron A-train station, March 24, 2009 
  11. ^ "Public Transit Ridership Report, Third Quarter 2011". American Public Transportation Association. Retrieved April 4, 2013. 
  12. ^ BJ Lewis (August 21, 2011). "New rail cars in testing phase". Denton Record-Chronicle. Retrieved December 2, 2011. 
  13. ^ 11 DMUs ordered from Stadler, July 27, 2010 

External links[edit]