With the city centre experiencing traffic disruption, a TD has called for the introduction of the Dart Underground amidst calls for a restructuring of central public transport.
Deputy Catherine Martin (GR) called for the introduction of the underground rail system to streamline public transport within Dublin.
The Dart Underground would run under the city centre and link all rail, Dart and Luas services. At 7.6km long, it would connect to Heuston Station and then go on to Kildare.
“The Dart Underground is the missing piece that would, for the first time, give Ireland’s capital city the joined-up network of commuter rail and light rail that it so badly needs,” she wrote in an op-ed for Journal.ie.
In recent weeks, a commitment has also been given to getting the green light for Dart Underground in the Government’s National Planning Framework. However, project planners in 2017 announced it would be “at least” 2030 before commuters would be able to use the line.
Labour councillor for Pembroke-Rathmines, Dermot Lacey, said that while the Dart Underground is needed, the city has more “immediate” problems.
Referencing recent gridlock issues at College Green, he told Dublin Gazette: “Dublin needs the Dart Underground, but even more immediately and at hugely less cost, we need one single Dublin transport authority accountable to the people of Dublin, to take over as much of the powers of the 60+ existing bodies responsible for traffic in our county. That is why we have the current mess.”
Cllr Ciaran Cuffe (GR) also backed calls for the Dart Underground, saying: “It is crucial that the Government invests in such high-capacity public transport infrastructure so that Dublin doesn’t grind to a halt.
“It doesn’t make sense to widen the roads leading to Dublin unless public transport also gets the money it deserves.”