An estimated £1 million is currently committed to improving accessibility to airports and railway stations and facilities therein for persons with disabilities, including persons in wheelchairs. That expenditure relates mainly to the provision of easy access for such persons at proposed new railway stations on the Dublin/Cork line between Clondalkin and the city centre, the provision of portable ramps at other railway stations to facilitate boarding of and alighting from trains and the provision of accessible toilets at main railway stations and at two regional airports which do not have them.
The proposed expenditure is additional to the very substantial capital expenditure already incurred on accessibility improvements to transport facilities in the past few years, notably in providing the new passenger terminal at Rosslare Harbour, in major refurbishing of Tara Street Station (Dublin), including the provision of escalators and lifts to enable persons with disabilities to have access to and from both platforms, the provision of portable ramps and accessible toilets at main railway stations and the provision of easy access to the four new stations provided on the Dublin/Mullingar railway line to serve Dublin suburbs. All nine airports in the State, as well as 86 out of 124 railway stations, are accessible to persons with disabilities, including persons in wheelchairs.
As regards trains and buses, Iarnród Éireann are well advanced in preparing for the adaptation of dining cars on mainline trains to accommodate persons remaining seated in their wheelchairs and both Bus Atha Cliath and Bus Éireann are committed to acquiring more accessible buses when replacing over-age buses in their fleets. Some new more accessible buses are already in service and are a significant improvement on earlier models.