|Posted by csalem83 on November 8, 2015 at 4:05 PM|
A journey undertaken on Dublin Bus route 145 on the 31st October 2015.
And so 2015 comes to an end for live updates on Off The Beaten Track. In 2014 the final trip was taken on the premier route in Dublin, route 46A, and it is very hard to top that. The 145 though comes pretty close. It has length, variety, is twenty years old this year with an interesting history, and more importantly goes beyond County Dublin. Surely that is the definition of Off The Beaten Track?!
The current route started at the same time as the 46A in 2010 during the Network Direct changes, although its alteration was slightly less than that of the 46As. It moved terminus in the City Centre from Mountjoy Square to Heuston Station. This move was designed to replace route 92 which ran from Heuston Station to Wilton Terrace. The new bit of routing for the 145 was along the quays from O’Connell Bridge to Heuston. Apart from that the rest of the route remained unchanged. From D’Olier Street the 145 follows the 46A to Foxrock Church, passing through Donnybrook and serving the Stillorgan Road. From Foxrock Church it continues south along the Bray Road (which is a continuation of the N11 which the route has travelled on from St. Stephen’s Green), passing Cornelscourt, Cabinteely and Cherrywood. Just south of the latter place it turns off the N11 at Loughlinstown Hospital and heads for Shankill Village along the Dublin Road. As it enters the village it crosses over the former Harcourt Street Railway Line. The route continues south through Shankill, along the Dublin Road and passes Shanganagh and Woodbrook, before entering the town of Bray. At Old Connaught Avenue in Bray the route passes from County Dublin to County Wicklow. After crossing the River Dargle, the route 145 travels along Bray Main Street. In the past some services detoured off to serve Bray Railway Station, but now that diversion is gone. At the site of the former Town Hall the 145 joins Killarney Road. After travelling a short distance along it, it turns onto Killarney Road and then onto Herbert Road. After passing Ardmore Studios (where Penny Dreadful was being filmed when I did the 145) the route rejoins Killarney Road after serving Kilbride Lane. At Springfield Cemetery the 145 passes the former terminus of the 45A in Ballywaltrim, but continues on a short distance to South Cross where the 145 now terminates in Ballywaltrim. In total the route is approximately 30 kilometres long.
Up until January 2015 the 145 terminated even further south on N11 at Kilmacanogue. However due to running time issues on the 145, and the subsequent delays this brought about, it was decided that the 45A and the 145 would swap termini. As the former route operates every 30 mins and the latter every 10 minutes, the 45A terminus in Ballywaltrim was not large enough to accommodate the buses on the 145, which is why the new terminus at South Cross was created. In response to concerns from residents of Kilmacanogue, a 145 departure to the city still operates from there in the mornings. During college term, a number of departures operate from UCD Belfield to Kilmacanogue in the evenings.
As mentioned earlier, the route is twenty years old this year, starting in December 1995. However the 1995 route was very different to the 2015 route. It was created as part of a revision of Bray local services, which also saw the 184 and 185 replace the 84A and 85 respectively. These routes, along with the 146, were part of the Localink network and were operated by minibuses. The 145 operated from Palermo (not the Italian one) to Kilmacanogue. The routing from the Dublin Road (where it exited Palermo) to Kilmacanogue is the same as now, except it visited the railway station where all the local routes met up. This situation continued until 2004 when one of the biggest extensions to a bus route took place and it was extended north by over 20 kilometres to Mountjoy Square in Dublin City Centre. The new route 145 (originally planned to be numbered 45B) was inaugurated with Volvo Olympian buses and was a high frequency route from the start, bringing extra capacity to the Stillorgan QBC. At the time I was attending UCD and when the route started students who would be waiting for a 46A into the city would be confused by this new route 145 and decide not to use it. That did not last long and the 145 became a very popular route. The bus types also changed with the Olympians being replaced by AVs and AXs before EVs settled down on it from late 2007 on. The 2010 change to the route was one of the more successful Network Direct alterations, and it was a very smart move sending the route down along the River Liffey to Heuston Station. It provided a high frequency connection between the station and the city all day and offered an alternative to the Luas tram. In fact the change was so successful that the buses could not cope with demand. Donnybrook Garage had to start allocating some of their VT triaxles from the 46A to the 145. With only twenty VTs in the depot there was not enough to share between the two routes and as a result VTs 21-35 had to transfer over from Phibsborough to Donnybrook. The EVs continued to work the route in between the VTs. Up until the Olympians were withdrawn in 2012 they occasionally appeared on extras in the peak periods.
When I travelled along the route in October 2015 the EVs and VTs were still in evidence on the route, as well as the occasional AV and AX. A new class of bus was also present in the form of the dual-door SG. The first batch of this class had been delivered in 2014 and Donnybrook had allocated theirs to routes 7 and 8. When the second batch was delivered in 2015, Donnybrook started to allocate theirs to the 145. This was part of an NTA initiative to put dual-door buses on cross-city routes. The 46A was also rumoured to get them but that has not happened yet.
It is worth noting that the 145 is actually split between two garages, or more accurately one garage and one sub-garage. The main garage is Donnybrook but some buses are out-based in Bray.
The 145 is certainly an interesting route to travel on. Starting from one of the main railway termini in Dublin and travelling along the River Liffey, it then heads out of the city along the N11, before passing through Shankill and along the leafy road into Bray. From Shankill through the outer areas of Bray the route provides views of the Dublin and Wicklow Mountains. The sight of tri-axle double-deckers along the southern part of the route is also quite different when one normally associates the Envire 500 with the skyscrapers of Hong Kong. It is long way from Bray to Hong Kong!
For the page on route 145, click here
For an overview of the original and current route 145, click here
For the page on route 92, click here
And with that the live updates for 2015 have come to an end. Our journey began this year on the 83 in Kimmage and ended in Bray on the 145, with many other parts of the city, and beyond, visited in between. There will be a few more updates of old routes between now and February 2016, so keep checking back to the website.
And I would also like to take this opportunity to thank the other bus enthusiasts who have helped with some of the route details throughout the year. It is very much appreciated.