Fianna Fáil Press Office
Cllr Paul McAuliffe
Dublin North West
18 February 2016
Dublin’s commuters cannot wait another five years for solutions – McAuliffe
Fianna Fáil candidate for Dublin North West, Clllr Paul McAuliffe maintains that the capital city’s residents cannot afford to wait another five years for an improvement to the transport system.
Commenting following the launch of the party’s Transport Policy document A Better Deal for Commuters, Cllr McAuliffe warned that a better transport system is urgently required for the Greater Dublin Area.
“The upset and inconvenience of the Luas strike today shows how important public transport is to the city,” added Cllr McAuliffe. “We need a government with a vision for a better transport system for the Greater Dublin Area. We cannot afford another five years of this government, which has absolutely no plan for dealing with the problems that commuters face on a daily basis. They have no plan for dealing with the ever-increasing traffic congestion problem which is threatening to engulf Dublin and surrounding counties, reducing commuters’ time at home with their families and their quality of life.
“Their ‘plan’ for getting more commuters onto public transport has been simply to make life more difficult for commuters. Fianna Fáil has a different vision which will rely on ‘pull’ factors to attract more commuters to use public transport to get to work, making services more frequent, reliable and integrated. Fares increases on all public transport including Dublin Bus, Dart, Luas and commuter rail have been predatory, and have for the first time created the risk of fare poverty in Dublin, where commuters can barely afford to get to work.
“We will freeze fares for three years and introduce targeted fare reductions for young people to encourage them to develop the ‘habit’ early on of using public transport. Our proposals for urban cycling, such as funding for Open Streets initiatives, secure bike lockers and investment in cycle friendly infrastructure will make cycling a more feasible, attractive and safer mode of travel to work for a greater number of commuters.
“Most worryingly, this government has no future transport vision for how to deal with the expected 401,400 population growth in the GDA by 2030, accounting for 65% of national population growth.
“Their decision to cancel Dart Underground, commuter rail expansion and the original Metro North is testimony to the lack of planning and lack of vision for Dublin held by Fine Gael and Labour. We will make rail central to transport for Dublin and prioritise these projects which would more than treble rail capacity and for the first time provide an integrated commuter and intercity rail network in Dublin,” vowed Cllr McAuliffe.