Weatherford Democrat

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April 7, 2013

County, regional officials discuss plans to get rail service on track

(Continued)

 

“It averages 9,000 to 10,000 riders daily,” he said. “We look at the TRE as an indicator of interest and appetite to have intermodal transportation.”  

Shelton said the 37-mile Tex Rail project, which stretches from east of Benbrook Lake to DFW Airport, should start construction this time next year.

The best places to implement commuter rail, Shelton said, are the existing freight railroad corridors, most owned by Union Pacific Railroad or BNSF Railroad. 

“We believe by negotiating we will be able to implement passenger rail in those corridors,” he said, noting that their locations would be convenient for commuters.   

Passenger rail, Shelton said, will soon have more modern-style equipment.

“They’re getting away from from the old-style locomotives with the coach cabs following them,” he said.

He also said that NCTCOG was beginning to develop a priority plan for the western region, and will be working with leaders in Parker and Tarrant counties to prioritize projects.

A private consortium from Japan approached NCTCOG a year ago, Shelton said, and wants to come to the U.S. and implement high-speed rail — over 200 mph. He said the group determined the best place to do so would be from Dallas/Fort Worth to Houston, a trip that would then take 90 minutes.

Riley asked Shelton to explain why establishing commuter rail can’t be done quickly. 

“There are several key steps,” Shelton said. “The corridors are owned by railroads, and we must reach agreements to operate in their right-of-ways. It typically requires very little right-of-way acquisition; a real benefit is their minimial impact on communities. But we have to reach agreements on safety issues.”

Shelton also listed the level of environmental scrutiny required, the design, engineering and construction of the system, and finding the resources.

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    Although the initial phases of the project date back three years ago, the Citizen’s Capital Advisory Committee, appointed by the Weatherford City Council, has been working tirelessly through the first and second quarters of this year to come up with viable street projects for the city’s current Transportation Capital Improvement Plan. At a work session Tuesday evening, City of Weatherford Director of Capital Transportation Terry Hughes walked the council through CCAC’s proposed streets projects, which would be funded by a bond that could be voted on in a November election.

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    A 16-year-old Weatherford teen injured in a single-vehicle wreck near Brock last week died Tuesday afternoon at John Peter Smith Hospital in Fort Worth, according to the Tarrant County Medical Examiner. 

    Jordan Paredes, reported by relatives to be in a coma following the wreck, was pronounced dead shortly after 2 p.m. in the trauma intensive care unit, the medical examiner reported. 

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

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    The Daughters of the American Revolution is all about supporting the military and Saturday morning, District II of the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution gathered for a district workshop meeting and to contribute to the United Service Organizations Inc.’s Treats for Troops, which distributes snacks and refreshments to military members traveling through the DFW Airport.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • city graphs.jpg HO council talks water rate increase

    At a regular Hudson Oaks City Council meeting Thursday, Hudson Oaks Assistant City Administrator Chad Janicek presented the proposed fiscal year 2015 budget. As a part of the proposal, Janicek presented the council with proposed water utility rate increases, some of which, if approved, would take effect at the beginning of the 2015 fiscal year in October. The second half would take effect in the coming years, still to be determined. As a result, the proposed rate adjustment will occur in two phases.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Julie Witt Parolee accused of embezzling $48,000 from Weatherford attorney

    A paroled paralegal, accused of embezzling more than $48,000 from a Weatherford attorney since November and leaving behind forged documents affecting at least two clients’ legal cases, is in jail again, facing her fourth felony theft charge in 15 years. 

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Splash Kingdom suspect Water park burglar sought

    Hudson Oaks police are requesting the public’s assistance in catching a burglar who broke into Splash Kingdom Water Park in Hudson Oaks earlier this month. 

    July 29, 2014 2 Photos

  • 0729 one purple heart group.jpg A Purple Heart County

    County Judge Mark Riley and Parker County commissioners proclaimed Parker County to be a “Purple Heart County” Monday, honoring local veterans and their families in a special ceremony held in the second floor courtroom of the historic courthouse. 

    July 28, 2014 2 Photos

  • WISD to propose tax rate decrease

    Weatherford ISD, which is projected to see a rise in property values, is proposing a one-cent tax rate decrease, which would slightly increase taxes for the average homeowner. 

    July 28, 2014

  • Israel Andrade Illegal indicted for burglary, child indecency

    A Parker County grand jury has indicted a man accused of breaking into a Springtown-area home earlier this month and molesting a sleeping 9-year-old girl.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

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