Dublin Fine Gael Senator, Neale Richmond, has said new LUAS figures show the need for continued investment in the service as the economy continues to grow.
“Figures from the National Transport Agency (total for 2017) show an average of 109,000 people, on both lines, used the LUAS every day weekly, considerably higher than previous figures which were closer to the 90,000 mark.
“These figures show increased use of the Luas was recorded even before the LUAS Cross City project finished last December. They will have significantly increased this year with the cross city service,” Senator Richmond said.
“It is encouraging to see such strong use of a vital public transport service but it shows the need for further investment to address future and indeed current challenges. With the country reaching peak employment, there is more need for investment in public transport and in Luas particularly, considering the wide reach it has across the capital.
“Throughout the first half of this year, there was a notable amount of complaints about the LUAS relating to overcrowding, delays, stoppages to mention a few issues, with many passengers forced to take the service a number of stops in the opposite direction at rush hour just to guarantee that they will actually get on the tram. This of course follows the difficulties posed to commuters of dealing with 13 strike days in 2017.
“I hope that the current dispute relating to where drivers’ take lunch is also soon resolved as the last thing any passenger wants is further strikes and disruption to a much needed service.
“The introduction of new, longer, trams has been a belated success but this merely deals with the current challenges. The upcoming roll out of the Dublin metro along with large scale housing development on the LUAS green line particularly at Cherrywood and along the Ballyogan Road, will put increased pressure on our LUAS service.
“The fact that an average of 109,000 people are now taking the service every day shows the huge appetite Dublin commuters have for a reliable tram service. However it also shows the need for this service to be consistently maintained and improved with real investment that reflects the needs and concerns of commuters,” Senator Richmond concluded.
Luas Passenger numbers (from National Transport Authority)