28/06/2012

Bus Lanes Could Be Opened To Taxis

The Northern Ireland public will be able to hail private hire taxis on the street when new licensing laws come in.

The Department of the Environment has also launched a consultation on whether all taxis should be allowed to use bus lanes, which only some have access to at present.

At present the majority of taxis here cannot pick passengers up on the street – they have to be booked by telephone – and cannot use bus lanes.

The measures would remove what the Department called a "two tier" system of public and private hire taxis.

A forthcoming change in taxi licensing arrangements is being brought forward by the Department of the Environment. This will see the end of the current two tier system of public and private hire taxis to be replaced by a single tier arrangement.

Regional Development Minister Danny Kennedy said: "The future operating plans for taxis has prompted my Department’s proposal to allow any taxi to use those bus lanes where currently only the 'permitted' public hire taxis have access. Taxis assist the public and need to be able operate by being able to pick up passengers on their routes."

The change will only impact those bus lanes where taxis are allowed access, indicated by signs, and will exclude motorway bus lanes.

To see the consultation go to www.drdni.gov.uk or call 028 9054 1135.

(NE)

Related Northern Ireland News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

22 September 2017
Serious Concerns Raised Over Roads Maintenance Budget
The SDLP and Alliance have expressed serious concerns after it was revealed that the NI Roads Maintenance budget for this year is to run out next month. SDLP Infrastructure Spokesperson and West Tyrone MLA Daniel McCrossan has called on political parties to forge an agreement.
05 May 2017
Decision On Private Taxis Using Bus Lanes To Be Made By Next Minister
A decision on whether private taxis will be permitted to use bus lanes is to be made by the next roads minister, according to the Department of Infrastructure.
17 November 2005
Motorcyclists permitted to use selected bus lanes
An experimental scheme introduced in June 2004 allowing motorcycles to use certain bus lanes in Northern Ireland will now be made permanent. The initiative, which aims to lower the collision risk for motorcyclists and improve use of road space, follows a decision taken on 5 June 2002 which permitted certain taxis to use some bus lanes.
24 January 2018
Public Transport Under Threat In Rural Communities
Rural communities across Northern Ireland Ireland may lose their bus services as Translink said it can no longer afford to run them. The firm said it has been drawing from its own reserves to keep the services running at a cost of £13 million per year.
19 January 2018
SDLP Shares 'Public Cynicism' Over Negotiations Between Two Main Parties
SDLP leader Colum Eastwood has said he shares the "deep public cynicism on whether the DUP and Sinn Féin are truly up for the challenge of forming a government". He made the statement after Secretary of State Karen Bradley confirmed fresh talks to restore power-sharing in Northern Ireland are to begin next week.
16 January 2018
Carillion Collapse Should Be 'Epitaph' For Public Outsourcing & Privatisation
The events surrounding the demise of construction giant Carillion should be "thoroughly investigated", as the international construction company faces inevitable liquidation, Sinn Féin's Chris Hazzard has said.
21 November 2011
Kennedy Wants Car Drivers To Take The Bus
Car drivers are again being urged to go 'on the buses' as the NI Regional Development Minister Danny Kennedy announces next week's opening of another new bus lane - this time on the Shankill Road in Belfast - while other Belfast bus lanes opened today.
22 June 2015
Drivers Illegally Using Bus Lanes Face Being Fined
Drivers illegally using bus lanes face being fined up to £90 from today, Monday. A network of six static cameras and a mobile detection vehicle have now become fully operational across Belfast.
09 March 2018
Private Hire Taxis To Be Allowed To Drive In Belfast Bus Lanes
Private hire taxis in Belfast have been permitted to drive in bus lanes for at least a year. The taxis are allowed to use the lanes as part of a new pilot scheme from the Department of Infrastructure.
13 December 2002
Public warned over illegal taxis
Christmas is a time for giving but illegal taxi drivers are taking the public for a ride that could end in disaster, the DOE’s Driver & Vehicle Testing Agency has warned.
19 August 2015
Belfast City Centre Bus Lane Scheme Criticised
The SDLP said it is "seriously concerned" after a city centre bus lane scheme in Belfast has left motorists confused. In Great Victoria street, one signpost contains two signs which have led to confusion, however motorists are still being fined.
16 February 2017
Taxis To Be Permitted To Use Bus Lanes
Taxis will be permitted to use bus lanes on the Belfast Rapid Transit (BRT) routes from next Monday, 20 February. The 12-week trial basis will apply to the bus lanes on the East and West Belfast Rapid Transit routes and the 12 hour bus lanes in the city centre, which link the two routes.
11 February 2004
Bus lanes now open to motorcyclists
Minister of State, John Spellar has announced an experimental scheme allowing motorcyclists to use some of Northern Ireland’s bus lanes. The impact of the scheme on other road users and pedestrians will be monitored for the 18 months of the project.
17 September 2012
New Bus Lanes Cause Rush Hour Delays
New bus lanes in Belfast city centre caused rush hour delays for commuters in cars on Monday morning, when they were put into operation for the first time. They are on May Street, Donegall Square South and Howard Street, and operate between 07:00 until 19:00 , Monday to Saturday.
30 January 2008
Bus Drivers Shocked Over Light Rail Proposal
Those responsible for the more 'traditional' methods of public transport in Belfast are said to be outraged by outline proposals for a light railway system in the city.