Dallas Streetcar Project ‘Inspires’ International Recognition

What started as a 1.6-mile transit solution in Dallas has earned HDR international acclaim for innovative engineering, versatility and responding to the needs of a community.

Dallas Streetcar, known officially as the Union Station to Oak Cliff Streetcar Project, received the Special Recognition Award for Advancing Integrated Projects, one of Bentley’s top five Be Inspired awards. The award was presented to HDR Nov. 5 during the annual Year in Infrastructure conference in London.

This is the second consecutive year HDR received one of Be Inspired’s top honors. At the 2014 conference, HDR’s project team for the New NY Bridge, formerly Tappan Zee, accepted the award for Advancing Comprehensive BIM “Playbooks.”

Dallas Streetcar was singled out from a field of more than 360 projects from 66 countries. Because of its technical innovations and positive community impact, Dallas Streetcar transcended the narrower focus of existing Be Inspired award categories and was nominated for the Special Recognition Award by a jury comprised of 36 industry experts and media professionals. Jurors credited its combination of innovative design and concern for the community.  With a price tag of $56.6 million, the project cost much less than some multi-billion dollar projects also in competition.

Dallas Streetcar is the first modern streetcar in Dallas and the first in the country to operate off-wire with an on-board energy storage system for nearly a mile. The HDR design team also refined the original alignment, lowering costs, improving safety and minimizing the project’s footprint while setting standards for future streetcar projects.

As lead designer for the Stacy and Witbeck/Carcon Industries design-build team, HDR collaborated with Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) to create a reliable, safe and sustainable transit solution, but Dallas Streetcar accomplished even more. 

Using hybrid technology, it returned an iconic mode of transit to the aging borough of Oak Cliff, southwest of downtown Dallas, which is an historically low-income area cut off from the city by the Trinity River and its sprawling floodplain. Oak Cliff residents now have multiple transportation options thanks to the streetcar and an adjacent shared-use pathway. The overwhelming success and community-revitalization power of Dallas Streetcar has led to further collaboration between DART and HDR, which recently completed design of a .7-mile extension to the Bishop Arts District.

Dallas Streetcar continues to receive recognition, most recently from industry experts in the Lone Star State. It won an Engineering Excellence Award Nov. 24 from the Texas chapter of the American Council of Engineering Companies.

About HDR’s Transportation Experience

Our award-winning transportation practice is known for solving our clients’ most complex mobility challenges across all modes of travel. We are helping with multibillion-dollar programs ranging from managing the Council Bluffs, Iowa Interstate rehabilitation program and the San Diego Mid-Coast Corridor Transit project to designing the I-4 Ultimate P3 project in Florida and the New NY Bridge. In addition to planning and engineering, our experts help clients with strategic funding, economic analysis, public engagement, real estate services, program/project controls, risk management and operations and maintenance. 

About HDR

HDR has partnered with clients to shape communities and push the boundaries of what's possible since 1917. We specialize in engineering, architecture, environmental and construction services. With nearly 10,000 employees in more than 225 locations around the world, we think global and act local.