A call has been made for Irish Rail and Galway County Council to ‘work together’ in promoting the use of Oranmore train station to help alleviate traffic congestion in the city.
Local area Independent councillor Jim Cuddy said the station has the potential for further growth.
“Oranmore railway station has the potential to become busier for commuters and keep more cars out of the city, if Irish Rail and Galway County Council work together.
“One of the first things that needs to be addressed is that all the trains travelling to and from Galway should stop in Oranmore. This will immediately make the station more attractive for people travelling to Dublin and other areas for work and for commuters into the city centre each day.
“At the moment, only a small number of scheduled services stop in Oranmore, which means that people have to travel into the city or out to Athenry to catch trains. In the past, I have asked Irish Rail to increase the number of stops in Oranmore, which will make the service much more attractive.
“I have also requested that Galway County Council install street lights from the village of Oranmore to the railway station and the matter was raised again at a meeting of the Athenry Oranmore Municipal Area District.
“No commitment has been given by Council officials on this issue, however I will continue to raise this matter, especially considering that ducting for these street lights has already been installed,” said Cllr Cuddy.
He added that he is opposing the County Council’s plan to introduce paid-for parking at Oranmore station.
“Galway County Council have informed the local councillors that they are considering bringing in paid parking for the car park at the Oranmore Railway Station, which I am totally opposed to.’
“This cannot go ahead without the vote of the local municipal councillors and the Director of Services has already been told that.
“The Council should be working with Irish Rail to make this station busier and more attractive and paid parking would have the opposite effect.”
Figures from the National Transport Authority show that in 2017 (the most up-to-date figure available), daily boardings at Oranmore station almost quadrupled on the previous year.
There were an average of 262 passengers boarding the train in Oranmore in 2017 – up from 70 the previous year. The average in 2015 was 63; in 2014 it was 19 and in 2013 it was 23.