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DCTA game plans hold promise

It may only be July, but we just felt the first faint breath of fall in the air — Denton County Transportation Authority officials have announced that the coming football season will bring another promotion and partnership with the University of North Texas and the Denton Convention and Visitor Bureau.

The transit agency plans to offer a game-day shuttle to Apogee Stadium. The shuttle would pick up riders at the Euline Brock Downtown Denton Transit Center and take them to the stadium with stops in between at shopping and restaurant areas.

“The whole point is to make game day an experience,” said Kristina Brevard, the agency’s vice president of marketing and communications.

We like the idea and agree with DCTA officials that the plan should help improve service with a valuable partner. The student population is understandably important to DCTA ridership and the shuttle could be a great way to better serve many of those customers.

The shuttle should also make a lot of other sports fans happy. We believe there are plenty of folks out there who would choose to take advantage of a regular stadium shuttle to avoid traffic congestion and heighten their game-day experience.

In fact, launching such a shuttle might just create some new Mean Green fans. You never know.

DCTA officials also announced that they are looking at ways to work with Dallas Area Rapid Transit to help get fans from Dallas to Denton for UNT’s first home game against Southern Methodist University.

The goal is to not only provide a good way for SMU fans to travel to the game but to help foster a rivalry between the two universities, officials said.

A good, healthy rivalry can pay off for universities — witness the Red River Rivalry, the annual grudge match between the University of Texas at Austin and the University of Oklahoma.

Considering the current level of highway construction, some Dallas fans might not want to try their luck on Interstate 35 to visit Denton this fall, but a workable public transportation plan could help change their minds.

The result could be a bigger crowd at the game and more revenue for local businesses. It’s certainly worth a try.

The DCTA helped kick off the new year by teaming up with the University of North Texas to provide a way for fans to get to and from the Heart of Dallas Bowl, which pitted the Mean Green against the University of Nevada at Las Vegas.

We’re pleased to see that new projects are in the works. Promotions that benefit UNT, its students and the many graduates who call the North Texas area home not only make good economic sense for DCTA but also benefit Denton residents and businesses.