FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
February 6, 2013

1. What is the latest on the Mesquite Transit Initiative?

Mesquite is the first non-member city to connect to DART. The City refers to this component of the Mesquite Transit Initiative as the City of Mesquite Passenger Shuttle or “COMPASS”. COMPASS began operation on March 12, 2012 and has carried over 26,000 passengers through the end of January.

2. Where does COMPASS operate?

COMPASS operates along Scyene Road between the Hanby Stadium visitor/overflow parking lot and DART’s Green Line Lawnview Station. The Mesquite Independent School District has generously allowed the City to operate this 200–space parking lot as a park and ride.

3. What hours does COMPASS operate?

COMPASS operates as a weekday commuter service with 8 outbound trips in the morning between 5:02 and 8:33 AM and 8 inbound trips in the evening between 3:38 and 6:58 PM. The operating schedule is published on the DART website as Express Bus Route 282.

4. What facilities were installed at the park & ride lot as part of COMPASS?

An 8-foot by 24-foot shelter with benches, lighting, and a bicycle bollards was installed between the Hanby Parking Lot and E. Davis Street. Three security cameras monitored by the Mesquite Police Department were placed atop a new steel pole near the shelter to watch over the shelter and parked vehicles.

5. How much does it cost to ride COMPASS?

Mesquite residents pay $7/day or $100/month to ride any train or bus in the DART system and a trip on the Trinity Railway Express to the CentrePoint/DFW Airport Station. Tickets can be purchased with cash upon boarding the vehicle, at any DART station, at the DART store, and at local Albertson’s and Tom Thumb grocery stores. In addition, reduced fares are available for the elderly, disabled, and certain categories of students. Reduced fare information is available at http://www.dart.org/fares/fares.asp. Citizens should also check with their employers as many employers provide financial incentives for their employees to use mass transit. Please read the most recent COMPASS Rider Alert for recent changes to previously issued employer passes at http://www.cityofmesquite.com/compass/COMPASS_RIDER_ALERT.pdf

6. Will my taxes go up as a result of COMPASS?

No.

7. Why is the City expending its resources on COMPASS?

This initiative provides each citizen an affordable commuting alternative to driving to work. The more people that ride COMPASS, the better will be the quality of the air we breathe as their ridership reduces the number of cars on the road. In addition, the data collected on ridership will be used to assist City Council in determining the financial feasibility of a rail connection to and through the City as well as to attract private entities looking to invest in transit systems and transit oriented development.

8. Why were the citizens not asked to vote on the Mesquite Transit Initiative and COMPASS?

The City Council does not have the discretion to call a vote on any issues it feels are important to its citizens. In 2010 the Council wanted to ask the citizens to weigh in on this issue via a public referendum (vote), but the State Attorney General had already rendered an opinion stating that local governments could not call for an election unless it was specifically authorized by State law or in their charters. Neither State law nor our City Charter authorizes a referendum on issues of this type. However, if the City were considering joining DART, then State law requires an election. Since the Council was prohibited from calling an election on this important issue, it used other means to communicate with and receive feedback from its citizens, such as the November 2010 transit open house, the “Mainstream” monthly newsletter included with the water bill (and available online), the City website, and local newspapers..

9. Is the City considering adding any additional shuttle service in Mesquite?

No, not at this time.

10. If I work the "graveyard shift", can I park my vehicle overnight at the Hanby Park & Ride Lot?

Yes. If you wish to leave your vehicle at the Hanby Park & Ride Lot overnight, just send an email to jdittman@cityofmesquite.com requesting an overnight parking pass. Please include your name, address, phone number, and vehicle information (year, model, color, license plate number). An overnight parking pass will be emailed to you.

11. Where can I find additional information on the Mesquite Transit Initiative and COMPASS?

Information can be found on the City of Mesquite website at http://www.cityofmesquite.com/communications/transit.php and additional COMPASS information is available on the DART website under Express Bus Routes, Route 282, at http://www.dart.org/schedules/schedules.asp?zeon=bus .