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Deputy Cathal Crowe

Dedicated Ennis bus service could be operational by next year

A dedicated bus service for the town of Ennis could be operational by late next year or early 2024. That’s according to Fianna Fáil TD for Clare Cathal Crowe who raised the issue with Ann Graham, chief executive of the NTA this week at the Oireachtas Transport Committee meeting

A service for the town has long been spoken about and work is underway between the NTA and Clare County Council on finalising a route.

“I’m delighted to be told by the NTA that a dedicated bus service for Ennis town is just around the corner,” said Deputy Crowe.

“I raised this vital service with Ann Graham, chief executive of the NTA, in last evening’s Oireachtas Transport Committee meeting to get the latest update and was assured that the bus service will be up and running as soon as possible.

“The hope is that an operator will be procured and it’ll be tendered by the end of next year, with early 2024 a realistic timeframe to get the service up and running.

“As Munster’s largest town, with a strong workforce, I think it’s vital that Ennis gets its dedicated bus service which will help ease traffic congestion in the town by taking a large number of cars off the roads.

“The NTA will provide the vehicles and it is intended to be an electric vehicle service – so one of the challenges is charging infrastructure, which Clare County Council and the NTA are currently in discussions about.

“However, realistically it will be a diesel service initially with a transition later to EVs.

“We all want to see electric vehicles on the road and I’ve pressed the point that this mustn’t be a barrier to getting this route up and running as soon as possible.

“I will continue to liaise with the NTA and indeed Clare County Council on this service to ensure that it proceeds without delay and all going well, can be put out to tender by this time next year.”

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