Bus Éireann, City Direct, Private Bus Operators, Local and National Policymakers, National Transport Authority
Buses are an environmentally friendly mode of transport as they can carry many people using less fuel and road space compared to private car travel. This results in lower emissions; less air pollution; reduction in traffic congestion; and allows large numbers of people quick, cheap city access. A good bus system can also allow tourists and those on lower incomes get around the city quickly and cheaply.
For example, in Curitiba City, Brazil, approximately 70% of commuters use the bus system. Bus use in Galway could be expanded in ways outlined in the section on public transport above such as: increased affordability; cheaper fares during peak times; increased frequency of services; pre-paid and online fare payment; good travel information; more buses for special events; improved facilities on board. Other ideas that could increase bus use and make bus services more sustainable include:
– Having a comprehensive and low cost (or even free) school bus service for all schoolchildren, regardless of how close they live to the school. So many school children are brought to school by car in Galway City that they have a tremendous effect on traffic congestion during peak times. On weekdays when there is no school, traffic congestion is reasonably tolerable.
– Increasing route options. For example, the main residential areas such as Knocknacarra should be connected by bus with the industrial estates and areas of large employment such as Parkmore. Some bus routes could go over the Quincentennial Bridge instead of all going into the city centre.
– Increasing the number of bus lanes and QBCs (quality bus corridors) that give priority to buses and taxis. Quality Bus Corridors give dedicated road space and traffic signal priority to buses in order to reduce journey times and improve service consistency.
– Making the bus fleet greener. While almost all old buses run on Diesel, we could use more sustainable technologies such as: hybrid electric buses, all-electric buses, fuel cell buses, biodiesel buses and biogas buses.
– Providing clear well lit bus shelters incorporating seating.
– Secure bicycle parking near bus stops.
– Providing more double-decker buses to cater for peak time demand.
– Providing special racks or boots for bicycles and allowing the carriage of bicycles on all services for free.
Bus Éireann, Broadstone, Dublin7
City Direct, Rahoon Road, Galway City
Taxsaver Commuter Ticket Scheme, Connolly Station, Dublin 1