Deputy Jennifer Whitmore, Social Democrats TD for Wicklow has spoken out on the decision by Transport for Ireland not to include Greystones in the recently announced 90 minute fares for Darts.
“It is extremely unfortunate that the 90 minute fare boundary for commuter rail and DART services only applies as far as Bray to the south of Dublin, encompassing Zone 1 – 4 journeys. Greystones and Kilcoole will remain as Zone 5/6 stations under the new fares structure. The NTA has determined that fares on these longer distance services will remain at prices set in 2018. In effect, this means that a passenger boarding at Greystones will pay the existing Zone 5 Leap fare to reach Dublin city centre of €3.80. Passengers will be able to make a free transfer onto another service (bus, Luas or rail) in order to complete their journey, availing of the 90 minute fare.
“However, as anyone in Greystones knows, it can take over an hour for someone to get to Dublin from Greystones leaving very little time to avail of the 90 minute free travel limit. The TFI 90-Minute fare does cover all Dublin City bus services provided by Dublin Bus and Go-Ahead Ireland, such as the 84 and 84x the journey for people commuting from Kilcoole and Newcastle.
“This decision unfortunately, means people living in Greystones are effectively being discriminated against due to geography despite many people having to commute to Dublin, and Greystones Dart Station now the only stop not to be included.
“I have written to the NTA to express my huge disappointment in the exclusion of Greystones on the reduced Dart fares and the lack of consideration of the unique circumstances of these areas. We need to reduce car dependency on the area and traffic congestion by getting more people onto public transport, yet initiatives like the 90 minute fare does nothing to encourage people south of Bray to take up alternative methods of travel. I think this is very short sighted and I will be raising this with the Minister.”