Transport connectivity in the Midlands is set to for a series of improvements with new public transport announcements from Bus Eireann and Iarnroid Eireann under Transport for Ireland.
Improved bus services between Athlone, Mullingar and Drogheda, and between Athlone and Cavan are the latest announcements, serving many towns and villages of the region along the way.
Athlone to Drogheda
Route 190 from Athlone to Drogheda service will now run 10 times per day, and serve Athlone, Moate, Mullingar, Killucan, Raharney, Ballivor, Trim, Navan, Slane and Drogheda.
Athlone to Cavan
Route 466, offers improved options for connecting with Irish Rail services at Longford and Athlone, accessing Athlone, Glassan, Ballymahon, Keenagh, Longford, Edgeworthstown, Granard, Ballinagh and Cavan, operating 6 times a day, 7 days a week.
The new services are expected to be of particular value to students at TUS Athlone, allowing those from across a much wider area of the Midlands and North East to have easier access to the Athlone Campus.
The news comes soon after another recent announcement of a new service from Birr to Portlaoise, and from Mullingar to Dundalk.
Birr to Portlaoise
Route 823 will provide greater regularity and flexibility than ever before for the communities of Birr, Mountmellick and Portlaoise along with Crinkill, Kinnitty, Cadamstown, Clonaslee, Rosenallis, operating seven days a week, five times a day, Monday to Saturday, and four times a day on Sunday.
Mullingar to Dundalk
Route 167 will run five times a day, seven days a week. Starting at Mullingar Railway Station, then to Mullingar town centre, Delvin, Clonmellon, Kells, Carlanstown, Ardee, Tallanstown Cross, Mullacrew Cross, Louth Village and Knockbridge Cross before arriving in Dundalk.
Train Service Updates
Meanhile, train services are also set to improve from December 11th, with new early morning services from Tullamore to Galway at 06.50, and from Athlone to Westport 07.08, as well as a new early morning service on Sundays from Portlaoise to Dublin 07.40.
In terms of future plans, the electrification of Athlone’s town bus service has been added to the National Pathfinder Programme, which seeks to speed up the delivery of key national green transport solutions. Portlaoise meanwhile has taken significant steps in the realisation of a new 72-stop town bus service, the project has progressed to the NTA for approval, and in keeping with the Low Carbon Town designation of Portlaoise, it is also envisaged that this service would be electric-powered.