College Green Sam Boal/
No Carl Luas

The Luas goes at a 'slow jogging pace' through Dublin city

College Green also takes twice as long to get through on a bus.

THE LUAS CROSS-CITY goes at a “slow jogging pace” through Dublin city, the head of Transport Infrastructure Ireland says.

Speaking at the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Transport yesterday, Cormac O’Rourke said that the Commission for Railway Regulation had imposed a 10km/hr speed limit on trams at the last minute before the line opened.

He said this had led to the slow speeds of trams crossing the city, leading to congestion around College Green.

O’Rourke said that he had hoped the speeds will be increased.

The meeting also heard that the average time for a bus to clear College Green had doubled in the weeks since the €368 million Luas line had opened.

Dublin City Council chief executive Owen Keegan told the meeting that it now takes 23 minutes to clear the Green. He said that the council knew the area would pose a problem.

“It was always recognised that College Green, which has only one lane in each direction, would not be able to accommodate the same number of buses and taxis following the introduction of Luas Cross City.”

Ray Coyne of Dublin Bus told the committee that 17 bus routes had been moved from the area and another 10 will be rerouted next month. Coyne said the company was committed to rerouting as necessary.

Conor Faughnan of the AA said that the 2009 decision to ban cars, except taxis, from College Green was still being felt. He argued that the only solution was to move buses.

“Put simply: There is no room for buses and trams on College Green as it is. The trams can’t move, so the buses have to.”

His views were echoed by Joe Herron of the Taxi Federation of Ireland.

“It is grossly unfair to ask people to pay extra in time and fares to get to O’Connell or Dame St.

“The solution as we see it is to remove buses from the area as we are the only door-to-door service.”

Longer Luas trams will be operating by the end of next month and Luas operator Transdev yesterday said it would be looking for more extensions to trams. While this will be good news for passengers, it will mean longer times for the trams to cross traffic.

Read: Dublin Bus is changing another 10 routes to avoid College Green in the city centre

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