Limerick has yet to get funding commitment from the Government on the BusConnects programme, under the €116bn 10-year National Development Plan
LIMERICK has yet to receive a funding commitment from the Government in a €2.4bn strategy that aims to overhaul Ireland’s transport service.
The BusConnects initiative aims to develop “next generation bus corridors” along the country’s busiest routes in order to make journeys “faster, predictable and reliable”.
Dublin, Cork and Galway have received funding commitments from the Government under the National Development Plan.
If Limerick were to be included in the funding plan, there could be an estimated cost of up to €200m in the programme.
Dublin has received €2bn in the 10-year capital plan, while both Cork and Galway have received €200m.
The national programme will include a complete redesign of the bus network, simpler fare structures, cashless payment system and a state-of-the-art ticketing system, new bus branding, integrating bus vehicles of different operators and types, park-and-ride facilities, new bus stops and shelters, and transitioning to low-emission vehicles.
Questions around Limerick’s involvement in the project have been raised by the local branch of An Taisce, a charity that aims to protect Ireland’s natural and built heritage.
“The plan says that BusConnects will be provided to all of Ireland’s cities. This is welcome. However, it goes into detail on the plans for Dublin, Cork and Galway, suggesting that it may not actually be planned for Limerick.”
When asked if Limerick has been included in the plan, a spokesperson for the Department of Travel, Transport and Sport told the Leader:
“There are provisions to roll out BusConnects in Ireland’s cities; it is predicated on Limerick for example to bring forward its Transport Strategy to secure this funding over the lifetime of the plan.”
The Limerick Leader contacted Limerick City and County Council in relation to the transport strategy, but did not receive a comment.