Dallas-Fort Worth’s Regional Transportation Council approved up to about $1.1 million Dec. 14 for scope and budget adjustments related to the DFW High-Speed Transportation Connections Study.

The gist

The action gives staff from the North Central Texas Council of Governments the ability to adjust the study’s scope and budget, Senior Program Manager Dan Lamers said. The study, which was initiated in 2020, proposes a high speed rail along I-30 from Fort Worth to Dallas with a stop near Arlington’s entertainment district.

As the project moves into the National Environmental Policy Act process, staff can make adjustments to respond to alignment alternatives or refinements that may be suggested, Lamers said.

“Once we enter that process formally, we will have 12 months to complete it,” he said.

The details

Any scope adjustments will be funded by federal grants, according to a staff presentation. The extra money will fully fund preliminary engineering and environmental documents required for the NEPA process.

The action comes weeks after the federal government awarded up to $1 million in additional funding for planning the high-speed rail from Fort Worth to Houston.

Zooming out

The Federal Railroad Administration announced Dec. 8 it would invest $8.2 billion into 10 major rail projects across the country over the coming years. The administration also listed the Fort Worth-to-Houston high speed rail project as a finalist in its Corridor and Development Identification Program.

The program grants up to $500,000 to identified corridors in order to aid intercity passenger development, according to the Federal Railroad Administration’s website.

NCTCOG submitted the Fort Worth-Houston project while Amtrak submitted a separate application for the Dallas-Houston line, according to a NCTCOG news release. Both applications, which plan on the same corridor, were awarded funding.

What’s next

The NCTCOG is working with the Federal Transit Administration On next steps before the Fort Worth-to-Dallas corridor can undergo the NEPA review process. The process focuses on route alignment and station locations while identifying social and environmental impacts.