Building out the Dallas Light Rail System


At a Glance

  • Client(s)
  • Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART)
  • Project Location(s)
  • Dallas
LTK-designed railcarMaking it possible to DART around town. 

Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) was formed to develop a multi-modal transit system to serve Dallas and its 12 surrounding suburban cities. A core element of DART’s system is a network of light rail transit (LRT) lines. After the success of the 22-mile Starter System in 1996, DART implemented years of expansion and light rail vehicle (LRV) procurements, which led to the current system of 93 miles, 64 stations and 163 LRVs.

LTK has assisted DART in the procurement of its entire fleet of 163 LRVs over more than 20 years. During initial system development, LTK provided rail systems project management from preliminary engineering through final design and initial construction. LTK’s responsibilities also included preliminary and final design engineering services for LRVs and fare collection equipment.  In its role as DART’s vehicle engineer, LTK led a research and development effort for a low-floor, 31-foot-long center section to be inserted into the middle of DART’s existing LRVs, creating better service for DART’s mobility impaired customers and fully complying with Americans with Disabilities Act requirements.

Both ridership and the LRT project’s impact as a catalyst for urban development and redevelopment have exceeded expectations. The region’s long-term investment in the DART Light Rail System has generated more than $7.4 billion in regional economic growth, according to a new study of the agency’s capital spending between 2003 and 2013. The system, exceeding all forecasts, carried nearly 30 million passenger trips in 2015.

LTK Capabilities Used on This Project