Fianna Fáil candidate for the Galway City West Ward, David Burke, has called for a complete overhaul of bus services provided by Bus Eireann in the Knocknacarra area and has criticised the delay in installing bus shelters at popular collection points at Cotters Shop on the Shangort Road and also at Joyce’s Supermarket.
“The bus service routes provided by Bus Eireann in Knocknacarra have not changed since the 1980s and only for the entry into the market of the City Direct Bus or the ‘red bus’ as we all know it, huge parts of Knocknacarra would not be covered by our public service provider,” he said.
“There are a number of elements to the bus service in Knocknacarra which need to be addressed. Firstly, a direct bus service from Knocknacarra via Salthill must be introduced. I spoke with a business owner recently who explained that this was directly impacting her business and only for the City Direct service filling the gap in the summer period, things could have been much worse.
"Not to mention elderly people in Knocknacarra who would get great benefits and direct access to the Promenade via such a bus service.
"Secondly, the delay in providing bus shelters in Knocknacarra is completely unacceptable. With the advent of advertising being provided at such shelters, these are now self-financing to construct them. But we also have the ludicrous situation whereby bus shelters are not uniformly being used by both the Bus Eireann and City Direct services, meaning commuters must run across the road to catch buses from the other service.
"I would call on the city council and the councillors who have been welcoming their introduction for the last five years to ensure this delay is finally addressed. We need to start seeing results.
“There are also a number of other busy locations which require bus shelters, on the Cappagh Road, Clybaun Road and Western Distributor Road where commuters have to bear the full brunt of the elements in the morning.
“Finally, the timekeeping of our bus services needs to be improved, and there needs to be clear transparency for commuters on how long or late the next bus will be. I have heard from constituents where a bus has not come for over 40 minutes and the scheduled service time has been completely bypassed.
"The clear solution for the commuters of Knocknacarra is the introduction of small screens at popular collection points which shows how long the next bus will be. It is done in other locations in Galway, there is no reason why it cannot be done in Knocknacarra.”
Mr Burke concluded: “I hope the transportation section in Galway City Council act on these clear gaps and hopefully we can bring about an improved infrastructure for commuters in our parish in the near future.”