New lifts to be installed in Dart stations over next five years

by Gary Ibbotson

Irish Rail has agreed to replace and upgrade lifts at all Dart and commuter rail stations over the next five years following pressure from campaigners.

Bernard Mulvany, co-ordinator of the Access for All campaign said, “this is an amazing victory for the disabled community.

“Their right to access to public transport has finally been recognized.”

Access for All says that in one day in November, lifts were out of order in 11 Dart stations and that the problem has been getting worse in recent months.

“This proves that campaigning works. It is the only way to get change,” said Mulvany.

“Irish Rail had no regard for accessibility to their trains. They would have got away with it for ever had our campaign not reminded them every day that people were suffering as a result of this.”

A tender issued by Irish Rail shows the company’s plan to install 28 new lifts and upgrade a further 112 lifts across the rail network between 2020 and 2024.

The 28 new lifts will be installed at 19 stations with the 112 upgrades occurring at 58 stations. New escalators will also be installed at the Dun Laoghaire station.

It is estimated that the works will cost €12m with construction expected to begin earlier this year.

Earlier this year, People Before Profit TD Richard Boyd Barrett said the accessibility of Dart stations for people with disabilities was “absolutely shameful,” and called for all stations to be made fully accessible to people with disabilities.

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