Sinn Féin Councillor Pearse McGeough has welcomed the addition of eleven bus shelters across the county and in particular one that is scheduled to be installed at St Mary’s Villas in Kilsaran. However, Cllr McGeough has written to the National Transport Agency (NTA) identifying at least six other designated bus stops in the area that according to him “badly need shelters.”
Cllr McGeough said “in reality, we are on the one hand trying to encourage people to use public transport to reduce our carbon emissions while on the other hand we are not making life any easier for those who do. If we are serious about this then we need proper investment in our infrastructure and bus shelters would help somewhat.
“There are half a dozen bus stops around Castlebellingham and Kilsaran alone with no protection. It is just a red pole showing it is a designated bus stop. The area is a small village between the two towns of Drogheda and Dundalk and as you can imagine, many of those who avail of public transport are our older community.
“With it being a small village, they have to travel to access vital services such as medical services and larger shopping facilities. Given the weather we have here in Ireland and the extreme weather experienced by us in the last few years, is it too much to ask that our vulnerable or older people have a bit of shelter from that if they are using public transport? Or that they even have a place to sit while waiting on a bus?”
The National Transport Authority has confirmed to Cllr McGeough that upon completion of the current bus shelter programme, they will give consideration to a further programme where it could include further bus shelters for the Kilsaran/Castlebellingham area.
Cllr McGeough concluded by saying “Louth County Council have confirmed that tender documents are being drafted for the installation of 11 bus shelters across the County including the northbound stop at St Mary’s Villas in Kilsaran and we should see these 11 structures in place by the end of the year. However, I will continue to pursue the extra bus shelters suggested by NTA for the area. We need more bus shelters across this county, especially in rural areas and small villages.”