Chief Executive, Irish Rail
Chief Executive, Dublin Bus,
Chief Executive, NTA.
DART reliability to Greystones and replacement Bus Service: Improvement Needed
The Greystones DART is less reliable than the rest of the system due to issues such as; routine signalling problems, rock falls, suicides, timing & coordination issues on the single track. It is however heavily used, the 5th busiest suburban station, in spite of the limited number of trains. This is due to being the Southern terminus, large growth in area, having a large park n’ ride, the N11 being ovefull around Bray and the poor bus and rail service to the South. There is a need to plan a more effective replacement service when it is out of action.
I had thought that it was a principle of signal engineering that there should be a backup, at much lower volume, should it fail. However I asked that an hourly DART would be provided to Greystones at rush hour but was told due to track layouts and other issues this could not be done. As a result DART has been suspended for 9 days, including 5 work days. This is a major problem for commuters especially.
Some coaches were hired to Connoly & Dun Laoghaire for the Rosslare train and a small shuttle bus to Bray for the DART. Commuters had immense difficulty getting to work, most driving. A much better way is needed based mostly around extra services on the 84x bus . I asked Dublin Bus to put on extra but they said all buses were in use. Replacement coaches should use the N11/M11 to Loughlinstown and bus lanes after that. They could terminate/turn around at Stillorgan where people can get frequent DB services to Dublin or Dun Laoghaire.
In the evening the coaches or extra 84xs need to start in Dublin as people could not get on the 84x for 2 hours some nights, as short distance people took all the space. People need to be told of arrangements.
Problems which myself and others experienced:
AM. Early 84x, 07.00 were full at Blacklion. Later ones at 7.40 & 7.50 had space into Dublin.
Coach to Connolly went via Sandyford and took forever instead of using Loughlinstown bus lanes.
PM. 84x full from Leeson St to Clonkeen Road with many left behind. Some were full leaving Hawkins St. This a problem normally but was much worse with DART failure.
Bus from Greystones to Bray takes 30 minutes normally as against 10 by train. When disrupted bus can take 15 minutes more. A very slow journey for time critical commuters. There is no transport to Dalkey except the train. It is best for alternative services to use the M/N11 and its bus lanes as the coastal strip gets very crowded when the train is cancelled.
Cc Simon Harris TD, Andrew Doyle TD.