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Unread 17-01-2014, 08:32   #125
James Howard
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Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Sligo Line
Posts: 1,115

For working office hours in the City Centre, the train used to be the best option by far. The motorway runs out at Kinnegad so the journey time by car to the city is approximately the same but the cost is prohibitive unless you can share it among 3 or 4 people even if you have free parking.

There are several things that could be done that would cost little or no money. The most obvious is that the 1715 could be eliminated past Maynooth - it is very little use to anybody. This would cause difficulties in getting a train down for one of the early services but this could be done by running the 1805 back up in two halves. The main drawback of this would be the need to make the early morning services limited stops after Maynooth so you would need to run stopping trains behind these two services or strengthen any 4-car 29k services running around the same time.

What's there now isn't really working as the services I use have now become very lightly loaded. Friday mornings are quiet anyway, but I am currently sitting on the 0545 Sligo train and my car has less than 30 people in it after Maynooth. This has an extra car (7 instead of 6) over the pre-change setup, but it would have had every seat full after Maynooth before the changes. I've had to share a 4-seat bay once before Maynooth this week.

The stated aim of this review is to save about 3 million a year, or approximately 2% of Irish Rail's budget. This is all well and fine and is all the politicians' fault but the fact is that this review has been counter-productive as it has driven paying passenger traffic down by massively more than 2%. My real concern is that with the damage they have done to the passenger levels, they are going to use this to further cut back services on the next timetable review.
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