2 July 2022
By Tom Collins
Temporary inconvenience 2nd to 17th July– but more services after reopening
Ahead of the introduction of this major expansion in services, Iarnród Éireann will undertake essential track and bridge works at a number of locations between Cork and Cobh/Midleton.
While this will necessitate the closure of both lines from 2nd to 17th July, an hourly bus substitute service will be provided during these dates, each way between both Cork and Cobh, and Cork and Midleton. However, these works will facilitate the increase in frequency from 18th July. Full details of arrangements will be confirmed to customers in advance of these works.
The transformation of Cork Commuter rail services, planned under the Cork Metropolitan Area Transport Strategy (CMATS), begins next month with a major train frequency boost on the Cork to Cobh and Cork to Midleton lines.
From Monday 18th July, with the approval and support of the National Transport Authority, Iarnród Éireann will double the number of weekday trains operating during daytime off-peak on both lines from every 60 minutes each way currently, to the current peak frequency of every 30 minutes, to/from both Cobh and Midleton.
With both services sharing the line between Glounthaune and Cork’s Kent Station, a turn-up-and-go frequency of every 15 minutes each way between 06:45hrs and 19:45hrs will be provided for the communities of Glounthaune and Little Island. In total, 32 extra train services will operate every weekday on the Cork commuter network.
Chief Executive of the National Transport Authority, Anne Graham said:
“The doubling in off-peak frequency will make the commuter rail in Cork more useful for more people. It will make it easier to get around and open up this part of East Cork to greater numbers of locals and visitors alike.
“Improvement in the commuter rail offering was a key component in the CMATS strategy. While today’s announcement is just the beginning, it is a clear signal of intent on the part of NTA and Iarnród Éireann that delivering for the people of Cork by implementing the Strategy, is now the priority.”
Iarnród Éireann Chief Executive, Jim Meade said:
“We are beginning to bring to life the vision of Cork’s commuter rail network as set out under CMATS. Having worked with the Minister for Transport and his Department officials, the National Transport Authority, and Cork local authorities and the wider community in developing these transformative plans, we now embark on what we believe will be a decade of delivery for Cork. We look forward to welcoming even more Cork commuters to our rail service from 18th July.
More good news for Cork rail commuters during 2022
The increased number of trains on the Midleton and Cobh lines is just one of a number of developments benefiting Cork Commuters during 2022:
- Adult rail fares have reduced by 20%, and young adults and students have seen fare cuts to 50% of adult rates with the Young Adult and Student Card. Additionally in Cork, Mallow was added to the Cork Commuter fare zone, dramatically reducing commuting costs.
- Iarnród Éireann has applied for planning permission for a new through platform at Kent Station, part of the CMATS strategy to build capacity for Cork Commuter rail
- Iarnród Éireann will later this month unveil details of investment on a second track between Glounthaune and Midleton, and begin public consultation
- A new Passenger Information System will be installed in all stations on the Cobh and Midleton lines by the end of this year, as well as at Kent Station
- A new footbridge, including lifts for mobility impaired customers, will be installed at Little Island Station
The CMATS vision for Cork Commuter Rail
As part of the CMATS strategy to deliver an integrated, sustainable transport network for Cork, Cork Commuter Rail will be developed to include:
- Train frequency and capacity to build to 16 million passenger journeys per annumb
- A 62 kilometre high-frequency network between Midleton, Cobh and Mallow
- Eight new stations, and enhancements to existing stations
- 10 kilometres of dual-track to Midleton
- Electrification of the Cork Commuter network to ensure emission-free travel