New bus routes for Laois & Offaly
I am delighted that people of Laois & Offaly, will soon have new opportunities to hop on the bus to get to where they need to go. Laois has two new bus routes, Mountrath to Carlow and Roscrea to Portlaoise; and a new bus route Roscrea to Athlone will service rural towns and villages in West Offaly.
I was delighted to attend the launch today of Phase 2 of Connecting Ireland Rural Mobility Plan with Minister Eamon Ryan, which proposes 67 new or enhanced rural bus services across Ireland this year.
Last year, Connecting Ireland delivered 38 new and enhanced bus services across various counties, bringing new bus services to 67 additional towns. In 2022 almost €4m was invested in implementing Connecting Ireland bus services, but this year that figure will double to €8.5m provided by the Department of Transport and NTA.
These services are provided on behalf of the NTA by 15 TFI Local Link offices nationwide, including Laois/ Offaly Local Link which is managed by Frances Byrne, who attended today’s launch.
This Government committed to 70% of people in rural Ireland having access to a public transport service that provides at least three return trips daily to the nearby town. We continue to deliver.
The new Roscrea- West Offaly- to Athlone route will service rural Offaly towns and villages and is anticipated to be up and running in the Autumn: If not in time for the new college term than soon after.
The Roscrea to Portlaoise route is a variation of a current route and is anticipated to be operating by early summer. The Mountrath to Carlow route is at procurement stage and will be up and running in the Autumn: If not in time for the new college term than soon after. With reduced fares, contactless payment options and enhanced routes there has never been a better time to catch the bus.