Translink Chief Executive, Chris Conway has responded to a tweet saying that the company will be resuming a trial of late night bus services. Responding to SDLP Councillor, Seamas DeFaoite he said;
A range of later night services were trialled in 2019 but Covid19 did stall any further plans, we’ll start trials again in Nov/Dec as part of recovery.
— Chris Conway (@CEOTranslink_NI) August 18, 2021
The transport provider has been trialing this during the latte part of 2019 but this was halted due to COVID 19. This comes on the back of a rising problem in the taxi industry with a smaller number of drivers (2006 how are ya?). We asked Councillor DeFaoite to pen some thoughts for us about this issue;
Getting a reliable nighttime metro bus service is something I’ve been campaigning for since long before I was elected to Council. I’m delighted that Translink intends to bring back a trial of midnight services in the Autumn as part of their COVID-19 recovery plan. This will support our nighttime economy and open up the city centre to more people. This has become crucial as we seek to support venues, restaurants and bars while we re-open our city.
Making Belfast an open, welcoming and accessible place will bring benefits to citizens, local neighbourhoods and businesses. I’ve been working with my SDLP colleague Minister Nichola Mallon to seize the chance for change. This means delivering new opportunities for public transit and active travel, including Glider phase 2 which will bring huge benefits to Lisnasharragh and the whole of South Belfast. The more people we can get to choose public transport over private cars, the less congestion and air pollution issues we face in the city.
David McCann holds a PhD in North-South relations from University of Ulster. You can follow him on twitter @dmcbfs