On August 21st at around 5 AM the first DART passenger train arrived at DFW’s A terminal. Hailed as a milestone by DART and DFW Airport officials. The train provides taxpayer subsidized rides from downtown Dallas to the A Terminal at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport for $2.50. Once in Dallas passengers may access the extensive greater DART system. DFW and DART expect about 1200 passengers daily of around 166,000 passengers moving through DFW. The final leg of construction cost around $150 million dollars.
The effects on other ground transportation services and Allpoints will vary. In practical terms the ride from the A Terminal to downtown Dallas should take about 50 minutes not including waiting for the train to arrive. Of course our of town air passengers will have to tote their bags to the station and when getting off of the train take some other means of transportation, a taxi, to their hotel. With ten stops between DFW and downtown Dallas the journey will take about a hour. One can expect the cost to now go from $ 2.50 to $10.00 – $15.00. Additonally, out of town clients will have trouble determining which rout is best for their final destination. One would expect the total transfer to take about a hour and a half.
If the passenger is at one of the other terminals there will be another 15 to 20 minutes transferring on the Terminal Link, with bags, for a total transfer time of about two hours. If one is going to Plano or Garland add another hour. Allpoints estimates that only about 10 percent of clients actually go to Dallas and almost none go directly downtown. There is parking available at some of the DART stations with varying degree of security. Of course, this adds to the travel time. While there are many passengers who today ride shuttles or taxis who are very cost adverse we at Allpoints Corporate Express believe that the time constraints for this type of travel will not greatly effect sedan transportation.
The greatest benefit to DFW and the Dallas area may will be that this is a sales plus for Conventions and the meeting business in Dallas. I believe that the presence of the service will benefit Dallas even if many of the clients do not actually ride DART. Employees at DFW will certainly have a more cost effective route to work. I am sure that at “Mary Kay” time next year the Terminal A station will be a sea of PINK! I also believe that one ride on the train will encourage many of those ladies to use a cab, shuttle, or sedan to travel the next time. I observed this in the 1970s when there was a direct bus system into Dallas.