First of new fleet of 80 Wi-Fi and CCTV-enabled buses begin rolling onto Dublin streets

11 Oct 2012

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport Leo Varadkar; Gerry Murphy, chief executive, National Transport Authority (right); and Paddy Doherty, chief executive, Dublin Bus

Eighty new advanced double-decker buses kitted out with the latest wireless and CCTV technologies will have rolled onto Dublin’s streets before the end of the year. They are part of a €26m investment aimed at replacing Dublin’s aging city fleet.

Ireland’s Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Leo Varadkar, TD, recently said free Wi-Fi will be available on almost all public transport services by 2013. Plans to provide Wi-Fi on DART and Dublin commuter rail services will be implemented this autumn, while the 80 new Dublin buses will be equipped with Wi-Fi.

Wi-Fi has also been tested on two Luas trams and is expected to be available across the service before the year is out.

All vehicles are low-floor wheelchair accessible and will ensure that Dublin Bus will have a 100pc accessible fleet by the end of 2012.

The buses also feature bilingual passenger information signs in the upper and lower saloons announcing the next bus stop, free Wi-Fi, central doors, CCTV cameras, seating for 68 passengers and standing space for 11 additional passengers, clearer marking of wheelchair spaces and better luggage storage.

The new buses will operate on routes 1, 4, 7, 29a, 33, 102, 104 and 151 and are another significant development in the provision of convenient and comfortable public transport.

Rolling, rolling, rolling …

“When combined with other Government investments like integrated ticketing, providing more bus shelters, real-time passenger information, and the National Journey Planner, we hope these 80 replacement buses will encourage more people to switch from cars to public transport,” Varadkar said.  

“I encourage anyone who hasn’t used public transport for awhile to see for themselves how the new improvements are making a difference.”

Varadkar said the new replacement vehicles are the most environmentally friendly to date and meet Euro 5 emission standards, consume less fuel and are quieter.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years