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Revised BusConnects Proposals to Impact Local Commuters

Writes Ciaran Dineen

In recent weeks, the NTA have published their latest proposals as part of measures to improve public transport links across Cork City and County with revised maps drawn for Sustainable Transport Corridors (STCs).

The STCs represent bus only corridors which are seen as important measures that need to be implemented on local roads in order to encourage further uptake of public transport and reduce the amount of private vehicles on the road each morning and evening. BusConnects Cork is a €600m programme of work that aims to transform the city’s bus system, making public transport more accessible to more people. By delivering approximately 91kms of new bus lanes and bus priority, BusConnects Cork aims to make travel by bus, as well as active travel, a viable option while also reducing carbon emissions and congestion.

From the publication of the first set of draft maps last year, there was considerable public and political anger as a select number of homeowners were faced with losing portions of their property (gardens) in order to facilitate these STCs. The public debate reached as far as then Taoiseach, Micheál Martin, who criticised the way in which the people of Cork had been consulted about the process.

Between June 30th 2022 and October 3rd 2022, the National Transport Authority (NTA) undertook the first round of public consultation on initial proposals for the Sustainable Transport Corridors proposed under BusConnects Cork. During this consultation phase almost three thousand submissions were received in total.

The latest round of public consultation centres on the Preferred Route Options which have been identified. These preferred route options brochures are available to view and download on the BusConnects website.

While there are no proposals to implement any STCs in the areas around Carrigaline, Crosshaven, Passage West, Ballygarvan and Ringaskiddy, many commuters from the local area will be presented with the opportunity to travel on bus routes which will link up with these corridors. The ones closest to the area are STC I - Maryborough Hill to Cork City , STC K - Kinsale Road to Douglas and STC H – Cork Airport to Cork City. Bus Corridors are now to be included in places such as Marborough Hill, Donnybrook Hill, Grange Road and the Airport Road, all of which are regular commuting roads for those working around the Metropolitan Area or going to school/college in Cork City.

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