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Sinn Féin welcome increase in public transport use figures

9 October, 2008

Sinn Féin Foyle MLA Raymond McCartney has welcomed the increase usage of both rail and bus networks as highlighted today in the Road and Rail Transport Statistics Publication by the Department of Regional Development.

Speaking today Mr McCartney said:

"Sinn Fein thoroughly welcomes the success of current measures to see the increase of Public transport usage as detailed in the Road and Rail Transport Statistics published today.

"Both rail and bus usage are up significantly, with an increase of almost a half a million train users and over a million extra bus passengers from this time last this year. The benefits of a proper public transport network are obvious - environmental, social, economical, and so on.

"These figures will undoubtedly be improved upon given that Conor Murphy as Regional

Development Minister has promised a £86 million upgrade to the Derry to Belfast line enhancing links the second largest centre of population in the North and the entire north west region.

"On top of this this recent initiatives by the Minister on the improvement of the Rural Bus Scheme and with over 45,000 people applying for the 60+ Smart Pass, letting the elderly access free travel from the first of October, more people can access effective public transport.

"The ongoing improvements in transport infrastructure can only aid accessibility and mobility across the North of Ireland while also opening up new opportunities in the harmonisation of an all Ireland approach to transport for residents, commerce and tourism." ENDS

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