Tuesday 23 October 2018

Nine things we know so far about the planned Dublin Bus overhaul

Changes to be announced next month - but here is what we know so far

Aston Quay bus stop, Dublin (Photo: Google Maps)
Aston Quay bus stop, Dublin (Photo: Google Maps)
Paul Melia

Paul Melia

Dublin Bus services are set to undergo a major redesign.

The changes to the capital's bus network will be announced next month - but here is what we know so far.

1. Will there be new numbers?

Yes. Dublin Bus services will be renumbered under a major redesign of the capital’s network to be announced next month. Buses will be renumbered to reflect the new routes, with local services feeding into high-frequency ones direct to the city centre.

2. Will there be new routes?

Yes. New orbital services will be introduced, existing routes changed and some scrapped under plans to introduce high-frequency corridors across the capital. The changes will also involve some bus stops being moved, including shelters and real time passenger information signs.

3. When was this announced?

The plans were announced last summer under the Bus Connects programme and will be unveiled next month. The plans will be put out for public consultation for three months, before being finalised later this year.

4. Will any services be scrapped?

Some direct services to the city centre from outlying suburbs could be scrapped under the plans, with passengers forced to change from one bus to another.

5. How many people will be affected?

The redesign will impact on 136 million passenger journeys made annually by Dublin Bus services.

The aim is to improve services for daily commuters and while the measures are expected to cause some inconvenience, including short walks between bus stops in some cases, transport planners insist it will result in faster trips.

6. What's the aim?

The National Transport Authority (NTA) has previously said that if implemented, services would be provided every three to six minutes on high frequency corridors, with local services to specific destinations every 15 minutes.

7. Who's behind the idea?

The plan is being developed by US transport consultant Jarrett Walker on behalf of the NTA. It involves consolidating main radial bus corridors through the city centre, which would run between fixed points. These could be, for example, Dublin Airport to Rathgar or Lucan to Ringsend.

Different routes would use the corridors, but branch out to serve local areas before reaching the terminus. In addition, suburban bus feeder routes are expected to be announced along with orbital routes to improve connectivity between high-frequency corridors and local areas.

Examples of service improvements outlined last year included the trip from Harold’s Cross to Drumcondra.

The direct bus service already in place takes 40 minutes, which would fall to 38 minutes after passengers switched buses. Lucan to UCD would drop from almost 57 minutes to 49 minutes.

8. Is this anything to do with the Bus Connects plan, announced by the NTA yesterday?

The plan is separate from Bus Connects, which was announced yesterday, and does not depend on additional capital funding.

It is understood a new fleet will be deployed in Dublin Bus from late July, while private operator Go Ahead will be operating outsourced services in the capital on behalf of the NTA from later this year.

9. Finally, will it cost me more?

The NTA insists that the network will be simpler and easier to navigate. Trips will cost no more than under the current fares.

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