Fort Worth is the thirteenth largest city in the United States, and the nation’s fastest-growing city might be moving up the list soon thanks to its innovative use of capital investment grants (CIG) to better serve a rapidly growing population.
The Trinity Metro system connects residents in cities within Tarrant County, including Fort Worth, Grapevine, North Richland Hills and Blue Mound, with employment opportunities and entertainment and leisure options at the Dallas Fort Worth International (DFW) Airport, the historic Fort Worth Stockyards, Fort Worth Zoo and more. Trinity Metro also provides connections to several higher-education campuses, including nearby TCU (Texas Christian University) and downtown’s Texas A&M University School of Law. This access is helping to attract new residents in search of great jobs and other opportunities to the Fort Worth area.
Trinity Metro’s role in the growth of Fort Worth wouldn’t be possible without federal funding for public transit. Trinity Metro has leveraged federal capital investment grants alongside local funding to break ground on the TEXRail expansion to the Fort Worth Medical District, which has an employment base of 50,000. The 2-mile extension will connect to the existing 27-mile commuter rail line, so Fort Worth’s west side will soon have direct connectivity to DFW Airport.
Through CIG, the project received a $980 million grant to fund the original 27-mile route for TEXRail, which opened in January 2019 and was completed $80 million under budget. With the remaining funds, TEXRail initiated a phase-two expansion to connect DFW Airport with Fort Worth’s medical district – further expanding access to employment and business opportunities within Fort Worth.
“Federal funds are incredibly essential for transit authorities to be able to do large-scale capital projects. I don’t know if we would have been able to do a project like TEXRail without federal funds,” said Chad Edwards, the Executive Vice President of Strategy, Planning & Development at Trinity Metro.
Trinity Metro promotes TEXRail’s services to the North Texas region through initiatives like free rides to local events including GrapeFest and Grapevine’s Main Street Fest. These efforts have helped increase ridership by 38% above pre-pandemic numbers.
CIG funding has allowed Fort Worth to improve the Trinity Metro system and provide job and community access to match its booming population growth. If the city’s growth continues at the same rate, funding for Trinity Metro will be an increasingly important way to provide opportunities to Fort Worth residents.
*Visit the Federal Transit Administration’s CIG dashboard to explore the public transportation projects and programs fueled by Capital Investment Grants.