The Fort Worth Transportation Authority is going Mean Green.
The authority, also known as the T, will launch a bus service connecting downtown Fort Worth to the Alliance Airport area as well as the University of North Texas in Denton.
The new service begins Sept. 26.
The university’s mascot actually is an eagle, but its athletic endeavors and fan base are more popularly referred to as the Mean Green.
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Students attending UNT or Tarrant County College may jump at the opportunity to avoid traffic on Interstate 35W, said T President Paul Ballard. The route — known as North Texas Xpress, or NTX — will also serve TCC’s Erma C. Johnson Hadley Northwest Center of Excellence for Aviation, Logistics and Transportation at Alliance Airport.
“Students traveling to UNT or TCC for classes can get in a little extra study time by choosing public transportation,” he said, adding that many workers in the AllianceTexas industrial and corporate corridor may wish to ride the buses as well.
“Employees drive that route every day, but now they have the choice of using that time catching up on email or just relaxing while someone else handles the driving,” Ballard said.
NTX will begin at the Intermodal Transportation Center in downtown Fort Worth and stop at the North Park & Ride lot near Interstate 35W and Heritage Trace Parkway and the Alliance Opportunity Center near I-35W and Westport Parkway. The buses will make a final stop at Apogee Stadium at the edge of the UNT campus in Denton.
From the UNT campus, mass-transit users can access the Denton County Transportation Authority’s bus system, as well as the A-train commuter train to Carrollton and Dallas.
It’s a small start, but a new bus route serving downtown Fort Worth, AllianceTexas and Denton could lead to expansion of future public-transportation services among those areas, officials said.
The plan calls for the first bus to leave downtown Fort Worth’s ITC about 6 a.m., and for service to end about 9 p.m. weekdays, T spokeswoman Laura Hanna said. The T and Denton County Transportation Authority aim to run buses in the corridor about every 90 minutes.
“Hillwood applauds the Fort Worth Transportation Authority and the Denton County Transportation Authority for establishing this new route, which increases mobility to the broad range of workforce and educational opportunities along the Alliance Corridor and at the University of North Texas,” Hillwood Properties President Mike Berry said in a statement. “Fort Worth residents will now have public transportation options from downtown Fort Worth to the jobs at AllianceTexas, and Alliance area employers will have access to an even larger pool of job candidates.”