Jennifer Whitmore has, for the fifth year in a row, called for a coastal Local Link route to facilitate sustainable access to Wicklow’s beaches along the coastline from Arklow to Greystones during the summer months.
Social Democrats TD for Wicklow Jennifer Whitmore has, for the fifth year in a row, called for a coastal Local Link route to facilitate sustainable access to Wicklow’s beautiful beaches along our coastline from Arklow to Greystones during the summer months.
Today she raised the issue with Minister Eamonn Ryan directly at a meeting of the Committee on Climate Action.
Speaking today Deputy Whitmore said:
“Our beaches in Wicklow are fantastic amenities that are visited by locals and tourists in their droves during the summer months. Currently the transport infrastructure is wholly inadequate to cater to the huge number of people flocking to our coasts on the weekends. Every year this leads to huge traffic congestion, a diversion of garda traffic management resources, roads turning into car parks, and a block in access to emergency services. This is completely unsustainable and can be prevented for the Summer of 2023 if the NTA answer my call.
“If nothing is done to address the lack of transport infrastructure on Wicklow’s coastline, the yearly pattern of traffic congestion will continue. This means that locals, once again will be unable to leave their homes and emergency services will not be able to reach people to provide urgent care in the area.”
“I am repeating my call for a seasonal Local Link bus route like the one in Wexford to Curracloe in the first instance, to be set up from Arklow to Greystones taking in stops along the route to including Brittas Bay, Magheramore, Wicklow Town, Newcastle, Kilcoole and Greystones.
Having raised it with the NTA every year, today I asked the Minister directly. While he could not tell me why this had not been resolved before now, I am glad to say he committed to looking into this on my behalf.
“This local link route up and down the coast will cater for a massive amount of people who want to visit the area. In recent years a seasonal Local Link from Wexford to Curracloe has been in place to bring locals and tourists to the beach during the summer months and the footfall on that beaches isn’t nearly as much as the people flocking to Brittas Bay and other beaches nearby.
“Bus drivers normally assigned to school routes could be re-deployed for the summer months on the local link. A local link for the area will address our over-dependency on cars, It just makes sense. People would be able to access public transport, therefore getting them out of their cars, locals have the peace of using the roads to and from their homes, emergency services would have unimpeded access to provide care.
If Wexford can get funding for such a service then questions need to be asked as to why Wicklow cannot get a similar service to that provided in Curracloe.” concludes Whitmore.