Objections to the controversial BusConnects are officially being lodged today by campaigners against the plan from across Dublin on Friday, the 28th of September.
The National Transport Authority were greeted by activists giving them petitions opposing the redesign of the capital’s public transport.
“If you take people with special needs or older people who use these buses, it’s not an adequate form of public transport for them to be using,” said Ciarán Heaphey, a protester against the new BusConnects system.
Commuters across Dublin will face disruption as many routes are being discontinued. The popular routes the 13 and the 11 will be gone under BusConnects which will directly affect DCU students on both Glasnevin and St. Patrick’s campus.
Emma Lackey, a biology and P.E teaching student in DCU, who needs to travel between campuses, spoke about the 13 bus and how it is usually “completely full so how will they facilitate a full bus of people who need to get home, go to work or college if they take these buses away.”
TD Noel Rock voiced his concerns on the plan since its conception due to the amount of“confusion” from the people he represents in Dublin North-West.
Shane Ross recently showed his support for the controversial BusConnects system, which he previously stated was not in his remit during a residents association meeting.
The Minister for Transport initially stated that he does not “micro-manage” and would not be involved with the details but will be giving submissions to the ongoing public consultation for the project.
“What I said was I didn’t draw the map, and I won’t be drawing the map,” said Ross when explaining his distance from BusConnects.
For BusConnects to become a logistical possibility, many constituents may not only lose their regular bus route but also their front garden as a consequence to the capital’s public transport redesign. A sacrifice Ross believes is “in the national interest.”
The National Transport Authority (NTA) is “firmly in the tent” of the BusConnects network and is committed to working with Dublin Bus to rework routes.
Tension surrounding the public transport reform comes from having Jarrett Walker from the States as a consultant on the project, according to Tim Gaston the director of public transport services with the NTA.
A presentation given to the board before the plan was published included an attack on Walker calling him an “American consultant who doesn’t understand Ireland.”
By Cáit Caden
Image Credit: Craig Shabaan.