Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

operations - traffic, infrastructure - bus/tram lane, infrastructure - bus/tram lane, planning - service quality, land use - planning, policy - congestion, mode - bus, mode - rail, mode - tram/light rail


Travel time, Traffic congestion, Strategies, Strategic planning, Service quality, Ridership, Quality of service, Quality bus corridors, Priorities, Patronage (Transit ridership), Passenger service quality, Objectives, Light rail transit, Journey time, Intracity bus transportation, Gridlock (Traffic), Goals, Dublin (Ireland), Bus transit, Bus lanes


Bus transport in Dublin has been and continues to be perceived as a poor alternative to the car. It is generally seen as the "poor person's" mode of transport, with many people upgrading to a car as soon as they can afford to do so. The result has been a significant increase in traffic congestion fueled by the recent period of economic growth during which car ownership levels have risen from 238 per 1,000 in 1991 to 350 per 1,000 in 1999. One of the main difficulties facing the state-owned bus company is that buses compete with cars for inadequate road space. In 1995, the Dublin Transportation Initiative proposed a new public transport strategy incorporating light rail transit and what they described as quality bus corridors (QBCs). To date, 9 out of 11 QBCs have been implemented. The characteristics of a QBC include a dedicated lane between 0700 to 1900 in most cases, although some 24-hour bus corridors also exist. Although there is no physical separation between the bus lane and other lanes, enforcement by the police is strict and there is a relatively low level of noncompliance. The QBC concept is described in more detail and the effects since introduction in Dublin are discussed, particularly with regard to travel times, passenger numbers, and reliability of service frequency. Future plans for bus transport in Dublin are mentioned, highlighting the significant contribution buses will be expected to make in solving Dublin's transport problems.