herald

Wednesday 19 September 2018

Fears of traffic chaos at Luas pinch points

The new Luas Cross City line opens to commuters today
The new Luas Cross City line opens to commuters today

Rush-hour commuter chaos is feared in the capital after two traffic-halting pinch points were identified during a trial run of the Cross City Luas this week.

The test, which took place on Thursday morning, was conducted to simulate expected traffic when the new tram line operates on a weekday for the first time on Monday.

The two pinch points caused traffic to come to a standstill for almost a minute as the tram passed.

The first caused a 40-second standstill along the quays as the tram travelled across O'Connell Bridge, with the second pinch point at College Green causing a halt for 50 seconds.

Shifts

It's understood that Dublin Bus drivers have not been able to complete their shifts on time, leading to overtime hours.

Last-minute meetings have been held between all interested parties to try to resolve the issue, before the line - which has been five years in the planning - is opened.

"Dublin City Council is aware of these issues and is in constant touch with Dublin Bus. Daily conference calls are currently being undertaken with Dublin Bus, Dublin City Council, the Luas operator and the Garda Siochana," a council spokeswoman told the Herald.

A Dublin Bus spokesman said both it and Luas were working closely together to ensure minimum disruption for commuters.

He said that meetings between the groups were held on a weekly basis.

"These meetings addressed upcoming works and areas affected by them, while also discussing, and amending if necessary, traffic management plans," he said.

"This process has ensured that there is adequate warning of changes to routes and stops, which in turn is passed on to customers in a timely fashion.

"As the Luas Green Line extension launches, Dublin Bus will continue to work closely with Luas and other stakeholders.

"On Monday, December 11, Dublin Bus will be represented in the Luas control room and representatives of Luas will be in our central control to ensure the efficient operation of both services and to help minimise any potential disruption to customers."

Luas operator Transdev was not available for comment.

The line officially launches today at 2pm.

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