As City Council approach their decision on the 13th September on whether to support or reject the proposal for a 3km bus corridor connecting the western suburbs to the city centre along Ballinacurra/ O’Connell Avenue, it is vital that the importance of the right decision being made is understood by everybody involved.
The route of this corridor has always been a very contentious issue as it runs along a residential area. However as a business organisation we believe that there are significant financial benefits for the city and surrounding areas from an improved efficient public transport service. Limerick is unique in that our bus corridors, currently developed in many suburbs, do not connect into the city centre (instead stopping at the boundary). We need a strong vibrant city centre and a quality bus corridor connecting the suburbs to the city centre should be in place to support this. This is all part of making Limerick City as commercially successful as possible as well as becoming the driver for economic and social growth for the entire Mid-West region.
We believe the concerns of residents need to be addressed thoroughly and an accommodation needs to be reached by City Council with them, but that as a European city we need to progress with the development of an efficient, reliable public transport system which is achieved by bus corridors. Bus corridors are environmentally friendly – carrying up to 70 people they reduce traffic congestion (for all) and fuel consumption – and offer a reduced travel time and more reliable service which encourages greater usage, resulting in more people accessing the city centre.
I hope that the debate on this issue continues to be engaging and fully informed and above all else, I hope that those voting on the proposal do so with the best interests of all the citizens of our City.