Dallas DOT Brings New Mobility Vision to the Region

The agency’s director wants to change the city’s transportation priorities and provide more mobility options to residents.

March 20, 2019, 12:00 PM PDT

By Camille Fink

Dallas Area Rapid Transt

D Guest Smith / Shutterstock

Dallas established a Department of Transportation just last year, and Michael Rogers, the city’s new transportation director, envisions a more connected city less focused on cars. Rogers is taking steps to bring comprehensive transportation planning and multimodal networks to Dallas. In addition, he is behind the use of data analytics that brought electric scooters to the city and have helped guide pedestrian safety projects.

Emily Nonko reports that Rogers has also taken on the Texas Department of Transportation by challenging plans to widen Interstate 30 East, a move that city leaders described as "radical":

He pushed back, offering his own "guiding principles" for the redesign. They included better connections for cyclists and pedestrians, no highway expansion in height or width, and bringing the elevated portion of the road below grade to reconnect neighborhoods that have been torn apart by infrastructure development.

Rogers has plans to continue a shift away from a singular focus on road projects, develop a strategic mobility plan, and make public input an integral part of the planning process.

Still, Nonko points out that Dallas faces a long road and many hurdles in improving the region’s transportation system, particularly around transit. "A big criticism of Dallas Area Rapid Transit’s sprawling rail system: While the largest in the country, it’s inefficient and doesn’t effectively serve many dense neighborhoods."

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