Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) is gearing up for the future of public transit and is inviting feedback from its riders to shape the design of its upcoming Next Generation Bus fleet.
Partnering with Dikita Enterprises and Consumer Market Insights (CMI), DART aims to engage with stakeholders at bus shelters, transit centers, and on DART buses from as early as 4:30 a.m. to as late as 10 p.m. The initiative, running until the end of next week, involves a brief survey to gather input on current bus features and potential new additions.
The survey focuses on improving the customer experience, exploring amenities and services not currently offered on buses. Questions cover aspects such as storage access, seat comfort, noise levels, and overall layout. It also delves into possible new features, including Wi-Fi accessibility, on-board air purification systems, passenger video displays, and brighter interior lighting.
DART's Chief Development Officer, Dee Leggett, emphasized the importance of understanding the customer journey in modernizing the bus fleet. The collected feedback will influence the design of the next generation buses, aiming to provide safer, more efficient, and customer-friendly public transportation.
The survey, estimated to take less than 10 minutes, is facilitated by CMI personnel, who may offer to complete it during the duration of the customer's bus trip. DART employees, including bus operators and mechanics, are encouraged to participate to ensure ease of operation and maintenance for the new vehicles.
As part of a broader 10-year system modernization plan, DART aims to enhance safety, reliability, and accessibility to public transit. The plan includes unifying signal systems, improving rail corridor track resiliency, replacing the oldest buses and light rail vehicles, and upgrading passenger and operating facilities.
DART plans to utilize the gathered survey data to develop new bus specifications later this year, with passengers potentially experiencing the benefits of the next generation buses as early as 2026.
To learn more about the DART System Modernization Program, please visit Capital Projects (dart.org)