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Outside airports doors, train station to downtown Dallas coming along...

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not going to lie, this article, and especially the picture in it of the underground station just outside of the terminal, makes me a bit jealous of DART. why cant Houston figure out a way to run rail down/along 45 and the branch south at Broadway straight to the front of Hobby, or follow the train tracks along Hardy Toll Road, and branch off on the spur to Bush. not light rail that stops every quarter mile, but express routes with minimal/no stops from the airport to downtown.

NM_06DFWstation.jpg

http://www.dallasnews.com/news/transportation/20140206-outside-airports-doors-train-station-to-downtown-dallas-coming-along.ece

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Why? There's no need to pay for highly expensive, lightly used rail lines to distant airports.

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Seriously. It's inexcuseable that we don't have a train to the airports. If we want to move up to a world class city, it is a must. What top cities don't have a train to the airport?!

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Seriously. It's inexcuseable that we don't have a train to the airports. If we want to move up to a world class city, it is a must. What top cities don't have a train to the airport?!

 

Those cities have also had their rail systems longer than we've had ours. I assume you're talking cities like Chicago, NYC, Atlanta, SFO.

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Projects like this are an investment in the future, but Houston doesn't seem to have the collective will for such stuff anymore.  Nowadays, it seems as if two types of attitudes predominate in Houston:  (1) apathy or (2) opposition to doing anything that isn't guaranteed to be an instant success.  I do think most people here like the idea that we will continue to grow a lot, but relatively few consider future quality-of-life issues.  I guess some people are comforted by the notion that they can just move farther out as the city crumbles.  I don't want us to fall into a pit like the one Detroit is in.  

 

To overcome that and get things done requires good leadership, both in the public and private sector.  I think Dallas benefits from more of that than we have in the last 30 years.  People are unaware of how infrastructure projects shape the development of a city.  I remember my dad telling me that when the Gulf Freeway -- the first in Houston -- was originally completed, people thought it was a waste and that "all those lanes" would never be needed.

 

Houston is my home town and I love it.  But ... I'm afraid that if we don't make well-thought-out infrastructure improvements, 50 years from now people will be surprised at the notion that Houston was ever considered to be competitive with Dallas.

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Projects like this are an investment in the future, but Houston doesn't seem to have the collective will for such stuff anymore. Nowadays, it seems as if two types of attitudes predominate in Houston: (1) apathy or (2) opposition to doing anything that isn't guaranteed to be an instant success. I do think most people here like the idea that we will continue to grow a lot, but relatively few consider future quality-of-life issues. I guess some people are comforted by the notion that they can just move farther out as the city crumbles. I don't want us to fall into a pit like the one Detroit is in.

To overcome that and get things done requires good leadership, both in the public and private sector. I think Dallas benefits from more of that than we have in the last 30 years. People are unaware of how infrastructure projects shape the development of a city. I remember my dad telling me that when the Gulf Freeway -- the first in Houston -- was originally completed, people thought it was a waste and that "all those lanes" would never be needed.

Houston is my home town and I love it. But ... I'm afraid that if we don't make well-thought-out infrastructure improvements, 50 years from now people will be surprised at the notion that Houston was ever considered to be competitive with Dallas.

I think that it would be more appropriate to say that Houston is not investing in commuter rail than it is to say that Houston is not investing in infrastructure. There has been considerable investment in infrastructure in the Houston Metro recently including major highway projects, significant improvement to drainage, large investment into the Port system, and a major push to improve the parks system across the city (which I would consider infrastructure).

It's valid to question whether infrastructure improvements are being focused in the right areas, but pretty questionable to say that Houston isn't investing in infrastructure.

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Those cities have also had their rail systems longer than we've had ours. I assume you're talking cities like Chicago, NYC, Atlanta, SFO.

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All things considered, just the very fact that Dallas has rail to both airports (soon) and it isn't even on our horizon should be enough to get Houstonians power brokers and politicians off center on it. I think it will be used against us in tourism, conventions and future sports events. Imagine how great it would be to always know that it would take 40 minutes (guestimate) to get to IAH.

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Those cities have also had their rail systems longer than we've had ours. I assume you're talking cities like Chicago, NYC, Atlanta, SFO.

Dallas, Phoenix, Denver, Salt Lake City, Seattle, Oakland all recently built or are building rail systems to airports.

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That's been my point all along. I heard the cab lobby has been against the rail to the airports thinking less people would ride cabs when the opposite is true. People could take a cab to the rail or from it. That's what we do in Chicago, DC, NYC etc. Houston needs to step up to the plate.

I wonder who our next Mayor will be. Maybe they will be "for" rail solutions.

Edited by Dakota79
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I think that it would be more appropriate to say that Houston is not investing in commuter rail than it is to say that Houston is not investing in infrastructure. There has been considerable investment in infrastructure in the Houston Metro recently including major highway projects, significant improvement to drainage, large investment into the Port system, and a major push to improve the parks system across the city (which I would consider infrastructure).

It's valid to question whether infrastructure improvements are being focused in the right areas, but pretty questionable to say that Houston isn't investing in infrastructure.

 

I agree that we've made a start on addressing some aspects of infrastructure that we previously neglected.  Also, please note that I did not say we were not investing in infrastructure.  

 

For one thing, our system of major thoroughfares is pretty inadequate.  That said, I'm not sure what we can do about it in areas that are already completely developed.  (For example, it would have been great if --way back -- we had had the foresight to set aside enough space to add lanes to San Felipe or Westheimer inside the loop.)    I visited Dallas in the 70s and noticed they were building 6-lane thoroughfares with landscaped medians way out in the middle of nowhere.  Now, those areas are completely built out.  Apparently, the "Goals for Dallas" effort there did yield concrete benefits (pun intended).

 

Also, I'm concerned that our electricity distribution system still isn't sufficiently hardened with regard to storms.  

 

I think that these two issues, plus that of transit, do affect Houston's ability to diversify its economic base.  To me, the topic of this thread highlights the fact that Dallas has had much more of a continued focus on making improvements, which aside from improving QOL, has also helped a lot in attracting corporate relocations and the like. 

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Seriously. It's inexcuseable that we don't have a train to the airports. If we want to move up to a world class city, it is a must. What top cities don't have a train to the airport?!

 

LA?

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All things considered, just the very fact that Dallas has rail to both airports (soon) and it isn't even on our horizon should be enough to get Houstonians power brokers and politicians off center on it. I think it will be used against us in tourism, conventions and future sports events. Imagine how great it would be to always know that it would take 40 minutes (guestimate) to get to IAH.

 

Dallas does not have and is not getting direct rail service to Love Field.

 

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Houston19514 -  actually LA is working on it.  Here is the latest.  

 

 

http://articles.latimes.com/2014/jan/23/local/la-me-lax-rail-link-20140124

 

Thanks.  But according to the linked article, apparently it would be more correct to say that LA WAS working on it.  To quote the headline:

 

"Metro shelves direct rail line to LAX"

Edited by Houston19514

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I haven't been (and am not an expert) and not wanting to get all technical about the rail to airports.  My point was "most major cities" and it looks like to me that even Love Field has it:  

 

http://www.dart.org/riding/stations/inwoodlovefieldstation.asp

 

You may not agree, and that doesn't bother me.  I just think that rail to the airports is a huge deal, especially for visitors coming from other major cities in the US and abroad.

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I haven't been (and am not an expert) and not wanting to get all technical about the rail to airports.  My point was "most major cities" and it looks like to me that even Love Field has it:  

 

http://www.dart.org/riding/stations/inwoodlovefieldstation.asp

 

You may not agree, and that doesn't bother me.  I just think that rail to the airports is a huge deal, especially for visitors coming from other major cities in the US and abroad.

I'm not disagreeing that rail to the airports would be nice to have.  Not sure it's a "huge" deal, but it would certainly be nice.

 

And now most major cities do indeed have it or are soon getting it.  But it is fair to note that in the majority of those cases, even among those cities that currently have rail service to their airports, it is a pretty recent development.

 

And No, Love Field does NOT have rail service.  Just naming a station "Love Field Station" does not mean the airport has rail service.  You have to take a bus from the airport to the station (a 2 mile bus ride.)

 

 

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^^ That shuttle ride to DART from Love is barely further than the shuttle ride to the rental cars.

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^^ That shuttle ride to DART from Love is barely further than the shuttle ride to the rental cars.

 

There have been talks about a people mover for years but nothing has ever come of it.

Thanks.  But according to the linked article, apparently it would be more correct to say that LA WAS working on it.  To quote the headline:

 

"Metro shelves direct rail line to LAX"

 

Yea, "safety concerns," what a joke.

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