Ireland’s Minister for Public and Commuter Transport Alan Kelly, TD, has welcomed the launch of a National Journey Planner covering 9,600 bus stops, 750 different routes, 152 train stations and route and timetable information from 120 transport providers across Ireland.
Available online at TransportforIreland.ie or via apps for Android and iOS, the National Journey Planner will help people plan a journey from door-to-door anywhere in Ireland using public transport.
Developed by the National Transport Authority, the service incorporates information from all public transport services – be it bus, rail, tram, taxi or ferry – as well as the location of footpaths, laneways and short-cuts so users can find comprehensive information to plan a journey.
“The National Journey Planner brings together a very complex web of timetables, routes, stations, stops and terminus locations for multiple public transport providers into a single information service for everyone to use,” explained Gerry Murphy, chief executive of the National Transport Authority. “People specify their origin and destination details and the time of their trip and they are given a short-list of up to six different options to get there.”
A one-stop shop for all the stops
A total of 120 operators are covered by the service, which fully maps out a route with printable timetables and details of overall journey times.
“For the first time there is a one-stop-shop information point for all licensed and contracted public transport providers, making planning journeys much easier,” said Kelly. “It is a real step forward in integrating public transport information for users.”
Public feedback on the new service is encouraged and a dedicated feedback channel has been provided. People can also suggest short-cuts or walkways that they know of but may not be covered.
Future plans to improve public transport
Previous initiatives to improve public transport include the introduction of the Leap card and real-time passenger information. Eventually, the National Journey Planner will integrate this real-time information to provide immediate arrival information for all Dublin Bus and Bus Éireann stops across the country, as well as Luas and DART commuter services in Dublin.
The National Transport Authority also plans to incorporate the Rural Transport Programme into the National Journey Planner and a pilot scheme is under way in Clare to test how demand-responsive services can interchange with fixed-route services.
A cycle planner is also in development, initially for the greater Dublin area, as well as an accessibility feature to assist those with mobility impairment. A new feature for tour buses and their routes is also in the works.
Luas image via Shutterstock