The Richardson City Council is asking for community support in notifying state legislators of the importance of the Cotton Belt Rail Line. The Cotton Belt Rail Line is a proposed 62-mile regional rail corridor spanning from Richardson to Fort Worth. The connection would include stops at the Bush Turnpike Station and the University of Texas at Dallas in Richardson, D/FW International Airport, Fort Worth, Addison, Grapevine and other Metroplex cities.
While Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) owns most of the corridor and includes the Cotton Belt Line in its long-range plans, because of other capital obligations the agency does not expect to be able to build the project for at least the next 25 years. However, a private developer has approached regional transportation officials with a proposal that would allow construction of the line to occur within the next few years.
To accelerate development of the regional rail line, legislation is needed to create a Special District that would be able to finance its construction. The Richardson City Council has made passage of such legislation a priority for this year's session. The public-private partnership envisioned would use revenue from this Special District to build, maintain and operate the Cotton Belt Rail Line.
Senate Bill 1333 is currently under consideration by the Texas Legislature. Input from the public is needed to demonstrate community support for the project. A sample letter of support has been created for people to send to state legislators. You can go to www.cor.net/CottonBelt to find a copy of the letter and more information.