Naomi Long MLA said: “I welcome the opportunity which the consultation provides to focus on public transport moving forward to the future; however, this needs to be matched by a commitment to ensure that we move towards a better balance in our transport budget than we have at the moment. The budget is weighted heavily in favour of roads to the massive detriment of our bus and rail services and in contrast to other parts of Europe, where public transport attracts most investment.
“If we are to get people out of their cars, then the bus, train, cycle and walking networks need investment. Experience in other regions shows that people will only switch mode of transport when the alternative is more attractive and affordable than their current option.
“Devolution has presented us with an excellent opportunity to make Northern Ireland a green world leader and we must not let this chance slip by because of conservative mindsets on public transport.”