Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 18 December 2014

Minister plans biggest revamp of Northern Ireland's public transport system in 40 years

Transport Minister Conor Murphy has announced plans to set up a Public Transport Agency that will bring together bus and rail services.

The idea behind a major new reform of public transport services is to make public transport the first choice instead of a last resort, the minister said.

But Mr Murphy says he has ruled out privatisation — instead, public transport will continue to operate in a regulated system, with publicly owned transport operator Translink providing the bulk of services.

It is more than 40 years since the last major revamp of the public transport system and the new plans will draw on good practice and the lessons learned in other regions, while also meeting the requirements of new European legislation, he said.

“I want to make public transport people’s first choice, not last resort. Our public transport legislation is outdated — it is over 40 years since the last major revision,” he said.

The consultation period begins on November 9 and closes on Friday February 5 2010. Copies of the consultation documents are available on www.drdni.gov.uk .

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