A group advocating for a more inclusive, streamlined and sustainable public transport network for Dubliners has called for an end to “misinformation” and “scaremongering” around proposals for transport infrastructure in the capital.
The Dublin Commuter Coalition, which seeks to provide an outlet for people to discuss and debate their grievances around public transport in Dublin, held its inaugural meeting on Thursday night.
The coalition says it aims to be “the voice of ordinary Dubliners who want to have their say about the state of transport in the capital” and use public transport services every day.
Kevin Carter, who chaired the meeting, said the Facebook group began as a “reaction to misinformation” in the lead up to the redesign of the BusConnects project but had evolved into a forum for commuters including public transport users, cyclists and walkers.
Mr Carter said the main goal of the coalition is to make travel easier for commuters around the city.
“Cars at the moment have the most freedom of any other road user in the city. They can go wherever they want in the city at any time of day as many times as they like.”
Attendees at Thursday’s meeting, including a number of professionals with expertise in transport and city planning, agreed that the coalition would focus on a key issues, primarily the consultations around the Metrolink and BusConnects development plans.
Revised proposals for the Metrolink, which is due to open in 2027, are due to be published in the coming weeks. Meanwhile, the € 2 billion BusConnects plan is facing a series of objections across Dublin with opposition spreading against the newly-announced routes.
“The second round of consultation with Metrolink is just around the corner so I realised we needed to be organised and ready to react as strongly and quickly as possible,” Mr Carter told The Irish Times, adding that there had been huge misinformation about the proposed routes and construction plans for both projects.
“We all see the benefits of public transport and we all see how cities thrive with adequate public transport. But to see a new plan and be like ‘finally, this will be great’ and then immediately there’s scaremongering and misinformation, something needs to be done about that. We need to challenge that because it’s going to hurt the city in the long run.”