Written Answers. - Public Transport Services.

Conor Lenihan

Ceist:

238 Mr. C. Lenihan asked the Minister for Transport his plans to restore the bus link to Dublin Airport from the Tallaght area which was in place by a private operator; and if his Department has given consideration to the way in which a similar link could be re-established on a profitable basis. [19120/03]

Conor Lenihan

Ceist:

239 Mr. C. Lenihan asked the Minister for Transport the reasons given by the private operator for discontinuing its service from Tallaght to Dublin Airport; and the steps his Department has taken to achieve some restoration of this important link. [19121/03]

Conor Lenihan

Ceist:

240 Mr. C. Lenihan asked the Minister for Transport the steps he has taken to restore a bus link from the Tallaght area to Dublin Airport either through private operators or through the existing public service provider. [19122/03]

Conor Lenihan

Ceist:

241 Mr. C. Lenihan asked the Minister for Transport if he will ask Dublin Bus to consider starting a comparable link to that currently provided between Dún Laoghaire and Dublin Airport via the city centre for the Tallaght area and its surrounding neighbourhoods. [19123/03]

Conor Lenihan

Ceist:

242 Mr. C. Lenihan asked the Minister for Transport if he will make it a priority for Dublin Bus to attempt to link the greater Tallaght area and the region covered by South Dublin County Council to Dublin Airport. [19124/03]

I propose to take Questions Nos. 238 to 242, inclusive, together.

On 12 January 2001 my Department issued a licence to Dualway Coaches Limited to operate a service between The Square, Tallaght and Dublin Airport. The company subsequently sought amendments to this licence. However, before a decision could be finalised on the amendments requested, the service was withdrawn by the company. My Department was subsequently in contact with the company, but there has been no response to date.

It is a matter for private operators, Bus Éireann and Dublin Bus to propose bus services to cater for customer demand. A decision by an operator to cease operating a route is a matter for the operator concerned. The Road Transport Regulations, 1932 include provision for the transfer of a passenger licence to another licensed bus operator. It is also open to other operators to apply to my Department for a licence to provide bus services on the route in question.

On 17 August 2000 my Department issued a licence to Aircoach to operate a service between Tallaght and Dublin Airport. The company did not introduce this service. Following a recent request from my Department for clarification of its intentions in this matter, Aircoach has now indicated that it wishes to renew this licence. My Department has decided to renew this licence and the renewed licence will issue shortly.