Thursday, July 10, 2014

I Don't Think I Will Ever Get Maxed Out Riding Arlington's Public Transit To The Dallas Cowboy Stadium

Last week, the day before I drove to Arlington to watch the USA team get beat by Belgium in the Dallas Cowboy stadium I blog my lament about not being able to take any form of public transit to the Dallas Cowboy stadium.

That lament had someone calling him or herself Anonymous making a blog comment informing me that I could have used public transit to get within walking distance of the Dallas Cowboy stadium......

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "I Won't Be Pedaling The Cowtown Cycle Party To Arlington To Watch The USA Beat Belguim Today":

You could have gotten off of the Max bus at Collins and Andrews. It would have been a 10 minute walk to the stadium.

When I read the above suggestion from Anonymous I vaguely recollected reading about a new bus service in Arlington that was some sort of limited test type deal.

Googling brought me to the RIDE THE MAX website, a screencap of which is what you see above.

From the RIDE THE MAX website I learned that ".....for a roundtrip price of $5/day (or $80/month), Metro ArlingtonXpress buses will travel between the TRE CentrePort/DFW Airport Station and College Park Center at UT Arlington. From CentrePort/DFW Airport Station, riders access any DART bus or train or T bus to travel to Dallas or Fort Worth."

So, for me to take public transit to get myself to the Dallas Cowboy stadium I would need to figure out which Fort Worth T buses I needed to get on to get to the CentrePort DFW Airport Station where I would then get on a MAX bus which would then take me to the intersection of Collins and Andrews from whence I could take a brisk 10 minute HOT walk to the stadium.

Or, I could drive about two miles from my abode, to the Richland Hills Trinity Railway Express station and hop a train which would take me to CentrePort where I could get on a MAX bus to get to the point where I take a brisk 10 minute HOT walk to the stadium.

I am assuming that I would need to pay to ride the Fort Worth T bus or the TRE to CentrePort, adding to the $5 roundtrip MAX fare.

I don't think I burned $5 worth of gas driving to Arlington to watch the World Cup last week.

So, this method of getting oneself to the Dallas Cowboy stadium from my location in Fort Worth is what Anonymous thinks is functional public transit?

I have been in towns with functional public transit. I know what functional public transit is. You can use functional public transit to easily get yourself from one location to another. The town to the east of Fort Worth, called Dallas, has functional public transit in both bus and light rail form. Soon one will be able to take a DART train to D/FW Airport.

Vancouver, up north in this country called Canada, has a very cool public transit system called SkyTrain. You can get on SkyTrain south of Vancouver and have yourself a mighty fine ride into town, where you can hop on a seabus, included in your fare, and cross some saltwater to North Vancouver. And a SkyTrain line runs to the Vancouver airport.

Portland, in Oregon, has a light rail system which runs all over town, including the airport. If I remember right, and I am fairly certain I do, the Portland light rail is called the MAX.

Seattle, in Washington, has light rail known as the Link, which takes you from the downtown Seattle transit tunnel to the airport. Buses also travel through Seattle's downtown transit tunnel, with those buses taking you to locations all over Seattle, and beyond.

Unlike Arlington, one can easily take public transit in both rail and bus form directly to the sports facilities in downtown Seattle. You don't get dumped off a 10 minute walk from the Seahawk Stadium or the Mariner's Ballpark.

The video below, which I took in August of 2008, should give Anonymous an idea of what actual functional public transit looks like. First I walk across Westlake Center, which is Seattle's version of Fort Worth's Sundance Square Plaza, only bigger and surrounded by big stores, like Nordstrom. I then walk into Westlake Center, which is a vertical  mall and the south terminus of the Seattle Monorail. I then descend to the Westlake Center transit station. There you will see the transit tunnel which runs under Seattle. Near the end of the video I exit a bus and you will see a long line of buses, filled with fans heading to a Seattle Mariners game, with no 10 minute walk needed, just an escalator ride to the street level.....


Steve A said...

Your assertion that Dallas has a functional rapid transit system is, sadly, mistaken. I had an annual pass for several years and never once encountered a situation where I could get anywhere in Dallas quicker than when I simply took my bike on the TRE and then rode the rest of the way from the closest TRE stop. At least the T got bike racks on their buses earlier than DART.

Not to ONLY bash the Texas transit sadness, if you think Washington is a transit paradise, check out how long it takes by transit to get from Ocean Shores to Seatac Airport versus how long it takes to fly from Seatac to DFW.

Durango said...

Steve A, I'm guessing it must take about 4 hours to get from Ocean Shores to Sea-Tac, about the same as to fly from Sea-Tac to D/FW.

You can bike faster from a location in Plano to Fair Park in Dallas faater than taking the DART train? I've found the DART train easy to use to get to various Dallas locations and beyond.

I was mainly focusing on the lack of public transit to get to the Arlington sports facilities, while other towns do not have that lack.

At least in WA you can take public transit to get from the Pacific to Seattle. Try and find public transit to take you from Galveston to Dallas. Greyhound doesn't count....

Steve A said...

More like seven hours to get from OS to Seatac. No trains go down to Olympia so you have to transfer a couple of extra times to get to Seatac.

The reason DART is slow is that the TRE gets me close enough to most destinations that it is quicker to ride the rest of the way than to wait for the transfer. As one example, going to the Dallas Main Library involves waiting over a half hour after the TRE arrives at Union Station since the previous bus leaves two minutes before the train arrives. In that case, walking is quicker than waiting on DART. For another example, taking the 408 bus from DFW Airport and transferring to get to Plano is an adventure that will take most of a day. Dallas bus/rail is good when it is a straight shot to get where you want to go.