Dallas Bus System Overhaul Rolling Out in January. Will it Succeed?

The Dallas City Council recently approved a long-awaited and much-delayed bus system redesign for DART. Riders should require fewer transfers and shorter wait times starting in January 2022.

2 minute read

September 16, 2021, 8:00 AM PDT

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell


DART Bus

BeyondDC / Flickr

"The long-promised and even longer-overdue overhaul of [the the Dallas Area Rapid Transit] bus system — neglected for decades while the transit agency focused on flashy rail projects — will finally roll out in January," according to a column by Sharon Grigsby.

According to Grigsby's assessment, the DARTzoom bus system redesign approved by the Dallas City Council at the end of August won't fix everything, but it's a decent start toward making the system faster and easier to navigate.

DART is selling DARTzoom as a benefit to riders—who should require fewer transfers and shorter wait times to get around the city on buses. Grigsby calls attention to three key changes designed to achieve those goals:

  • On-demand GoLink service "will be increased substantially — to a total of 30 zones — and become an even more essential part of the system."
  • All local routes "will run seven days a week from, at minimum, 5 a.m. to midnight, with some in service even longer."
  • "In some cases, bus routes are farther apart from one another, especially those that were bunched together."

Rob Smith, interim vice president for service planning, is quoted in the article describing the new bus system as a hybrid of a high-frequency grid and a hub-and-spoke layout.

"The new plan calls for DART to designate 22 bus routes and its four light rail lines as a 'core frequent network' in which the goal will be a maximum 15-minute wait at rush hour, 20 minutes midday and occasionally 30 minutes in late evening," explains Grigsby.

Grigsby provides more on the current state of the system and the political changes that spurred the system redesign across the finish line—after elected and political leaders pushed DART to balance the core city's best interests with a commitment to regional planning.

For more, see the existing system map, and the new DARTzoom map.

Tuesday, August 31, 2021 in The Dallas Morning News

Aerial view of homes on beach in Maui, Hawaii

Hawaii Passes First Legislation Regulating Short-Term Rentals Statewide

The new law will give counties the power to limit number or short-term rentals and convert existing short-term rental units back into long-term residential housing.

May 13, 2024 - USA Today

Entrance to a drive-through car wash at night with green 'Enter' sign.

Ohio Towns Move to Ban New Car Washes

City officials in northeast Ohio are putting limits on how many car wash facilities can open in their towns.

May 16, 2024 - News 5 Cleveland

Rail tracks on the left, rustic log-built train station painted reddish brown with a green metal roof and concrete platform on the right, evergreen forest and bright blue sky with fluffy white clouds in the background.

More Passenger Rail Coming to Montana

Planning is underway to restore a 45-year-defunct regional passenger rail line connecting southern Montana to Billings and Amtrak’s east-west Empire Builder line from Seattle to Chicago.

May 14, 2024 - 8KPAX

Aerial view of Oceanwide Plaza skyscrapers covered with graffiti tags.

LA’s Abandoned Towers Loom as a “$1.2 Billion Ruin of Global Capital”

Oceanwide Plaza, shuttered mid-construction after its developer filed for bankruptcy, has stood vacant on prime Los Angeles real estate since 2019.

56 minutes ago - The Architect's Newspaper

Close-up of back windshield of Waymo autonomous car.

NHTSA Launches Investigations Into Two More Self-Driving Automakers

The federal agency is responding to reports of crashes and erratic behavior from Waymo and Zoox vehicles.

1 hour ago - Smart Cities Dive

Texas Townhomes

Austin Reduces Minimum Lot Size

Smaller lot sizes for single-family homes can make construction more affordable and homeownership available to more households.

2 hours ago - The Texas Tribune

News from HUD User

HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research

Call for Speakers

Mpact Transit + Community

New Updates on PD&R Edge

HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research

Urban Design for Planners 1: Software Tools

This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.

Planning for Universal Design

Learn the tools for implementing Universal Design in planning regulations.