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NTA must provide more stops on Local Link bus services – Kyne

27th August 2023 - Senator Sean Kyne

The National Transport Authority (NTA) needs to give immediate consideration to the frequency of stops offered along rural Local Link bus services, a Fine Gael Senator has said.


Senator Seán Kyne is also calling on Minister for Transport, Eamon Ryan to engage with the National Transport Authority (NTA) on introducing flexibilities on this service.


“The Local Link bus services provide a vital and much valued form of transportation across all parts of rural Ireland. I acknowledge and welcome the level of investment made into those services over the past number of years, where we’ve seen the creation of new routes serving additional parts of our communities.


“There is a need, however, for some lateral thinking when it comes to how the bus stops along these routes. Fixed stops, as city dwellers would be familiar with, don’t work as effectively in remote parts of the country, where often, passengers require an additional mode of transport to reach their destination.


“In my own area in Galway, for example, the new 432 service in Connemara, which serves An Cheathrú Rua,Carna, Casla, Roundstone, Ballyconneely and Clifden, has fixed stops – you cannot request a stop along the route. Someone living halfway between Ballyconneely and Clifden will have to go back to Ballyconneely to get the bus to go forward to Clifden. This is non-sensical and a waste of passengers’ time and money.


“Perhaps more serious however, and something the Minister for Transport should be aware of, is that it needlessly creates additional car journeys, which is what we all must collectively work towards reducing,” Senator Kyne outlined.


“We can see additional services being rolled out along routes with regard to both frequency and the addition of new routes. Putting in more request stops would make perfect sense when it comes to increasing the use of the service. Connemara and other rural areas have lots of small roads which lead on to National and Regional roads which also need dedicated stops. Allowing for more designated stops along particular routes has no cost, can be implemented immediately and gives passengers more choice and control over their journeys. This is surely what the Minister for Transport and the NTA must also be supportive of – time to act on it now.”

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