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Call for second bus station in Dublin 'to ease congestion' at Busáras

The Green Party wants Busáras opened to private operators and for a second bus station to be opened near Heuston Station.

The Dublin Bus garade on Conyngham Road in Dublin
The Dublin Bus garade on Conyngham Road in Dublin
Image: Screengrab via Google Street View

Updated 9.43am

THE GREEN PARTY has called for Bus Éireann’s Busaras bus station to be opened up to private operators and for a second unified bus station to be established near Heuston Station for buses coming from the west of the country.

At present most Bus Éireann services terminate at Busáras, the city’s central bus station for intercity bus service, on Store Street but the Greens think this “makes no sense” and is causing problems for the one, “congested” bus station.

The party says that many buses coming for the west and south-west of the country could terminate their services at a revamped Dublin Bus garage on Conyngham Road near Heuston Station to cut out inner city traffic congestion.

“It makes no sense to send all Bus Éireann services to the one congested location in Busáras,” the party’s spokespersn on transport and tourism Tom Kivlehan said.

“Nor does it make sense to force private bus companies to dump their passengers on the side of the street, causing problems for both the passengers and for other road users. This ineffective use of resources is not necessary and it needs to stop now.”

The Greens believe that the Dublin Bus garage on Conyngham Road would be a “perfect location” for a new station pointing out there is a footbridge across the Liffey which make it a two minute walk from Heuston Station and the Luas Red Line.

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“The Dublin Bus fleet could be switched over to the underutilised Bus Éireann depot at Broadstone and the changeover could be carried out quickly with minimal cost and disruption,” Kivlehan claimed.

He claimed it would also take traffic off the Quays and “stop some of our most beautiful Georgian squares being used as bus parks”.

Kivlehan also said there is no reason why bus stations could be shared in with private sector operators Cork, Limerick and Galway “where the current rivalry between Bus Éireann and the private operators leads to a similar chaotic situation to what is happening in Dublin”.

He added: “Putting the public and private services in the same station would improve both collaboration and competition between the different services and would be good for the consumer.”

Responding to the calls, Bus Éireann told TheJournal.ie that Busáras is already at its full capacity and, therefore, cannot be opened to private operators.

It also said that customer feedback has highlighted that passengers want to travel directly into the city centre rather than stop at Heuston Station, where they would need to use alternative modes of transport.

“Customers want a reduced level of transfers on their journey so they can sit back, relax, enjoy the journey and forget about the hassle of getting to their destination,” the company said in a statement. It also hit out at the Green Party’s suggestions, calling them “contradictory and very confusing”.

What do you think? Let us know in the comments

Additional reporting by Sinéad O’Carroll

Read: ‘Virtual bus lanes’ among plans to increase public transport use in Dublin

GALLERY: Check out how quiet Busaras is during the strike

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Hugh O'Connell

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