U.S. Rep. Kay Granger, R-Fort Worth, announced Feb. 28 that Trinity Metro is authorized to use remaining federal funds from the TEXRail project for an extension of the commuter rail line. The 27-mile route was completed on time and $80.6 million under budget, with roughly half of those funds coming from federal and half from local, Trinity Metro said in a news release.
The $38.9 million in federal funds can now be used to extend TEXRail another 2.1 miles from the Fort Worth T&P Station to a new station in the Medical District.
In 2016, Trinity Metro and the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) of the United States Department of Transportation signed a $499.39 million Full Funding Grant Agreement for the $1.034 billion TEXRail project.
The new station will be located behind Baylor Scott & White All Saints Medical Center, by the Mistletoe neighborhood.
“The Fort Worth Medical District is an ideal location for the next station because of the 40,000 people who work and visit that area. Extending TEXRail is perfect for medical professionals, patients and visitors,” said Trinity Metro President and CEO Bob Baulsir.
“As the economy of the Fort Worth area continues to boom, North Texans deserve infrastructure that keeps pace with our region’s rapid development,” Granger said in a news release. “Five years ago, I advocated strongly on behalf of Trinity Metro to secure a $500 million grant to build TEXRail, a 26.8 mile commuter rail line extending from downtown Fort Worth across Tarrant County, through North Richland Hills and Grapevine, into the Dallas Fort Worth International Airport.
“Last January, TEXRail opened not only on time, but also $80.6 million under budget. While unspent federal funds are typically used for other projects across the U.S., I strongly supported Trinity Metro’s application to use $38.9 million of leftover grant funds to extend TEXRail by 2.1 miles into the Fort Worth Medical District, even personally urging Acting FTA Administrator Jane Williams to approve the request. TEXRail’s expansion into the Fort Worth Medical District will improve quality of life and access to health care services, an especially significant win for our District’s lower-income residents.”
“We appreciate the FTA for allowing us to use the unspent funds toward expanding our TEXRail line,” Trinity Metro Board Chairman Jeff Davis said in the news release. “The support of Kay Granger and our other congressional delegates has meant the world to us.”
A timeline for the extension has not been determined. Baulsir said the first steps will be to define the scope and to undergo a competitive process of bids.
TEXRail began operating in January 2019, and the existing route runs between downtown Fort Worth and the Dallas Fort Worth International Airport’s Terminal B. The line has nine stations in Fort Worth, North Richland Hills and Grapevine.
– FWBP staff