New WDC Report Highlights Important Transport Demand Patterns in Galway City and County

  • Over a quarter of all workers in Western Region, from Donegal to Clare, live in Galway city labour catchment
  • Workers who live in the Galway city labour catchment have a higher level of education than the national average

Western Development Commission

New data showing the travel to work patterns of workers in Galway should be used to inform future transport planning decisions and to promote the area as an enterprise location.

That’s according to a new report from the Western Development Commission (WDC) which analyses previously un-released Census data to present an in-depth study of travel patterns into Galway city.

Speaking at the launch of the report, Lisa McAllister, Chief Executive of the WDC said, “This is very valuable information as it provides robust analysis of key trends and identifies strong transport patterns. It will be of particular value to policy-makers so that future decisions about regional transport infrastructure and enterprise location are based on solid data.

“The report illustrates some interesting findings such as the fact that the number of people commuting to Galway city from the north of the county, for example from the Tuam labour catchment, is much greater than the number commuting to Galway city from the south; the Gort labour catchment. This shows that there will be greater demand for public transport services into the city from the north of the county and, in our opinion, strengthens the case for the next stage of the Western Rail Corridor from Athenry to Tuam and on to Claremorris,” she added.

The report, ‘Travel to Work and Labour Catchments in the Western Region’, highlights the extensive Galway city labour catchment and portrays the labour supply available around Galway city. The WDC says that it provides evidence-based analysis that should be used to inform regional policy-making, and that it will be an important source of information for employers, state development agencies and local and regional authorities.

Ms. Mc Allister said that while there has been a lot of debate on commuting patterns in the Dublin Area, up to now there has been relatively little knowledge of local and regional commuting patterns in the West of Ireland. “This report fills that gap and provides a much better understanding of where people live and work as well as the type of work that people do, all of which can better inform policy for enterprise location, as well as identifying education and training needs and transport requirements,” she said.

Deirdre Frost, Policy Analyst at the WDC who worked on the report said, “The Galway city labour catchment covers the county and extends into south county Mayo and north county Clare. It is from this area that Galway city draws most of its labour supply. We know that people are willing to drive lengthy distances to access employment in Galway city. For example the report notes that 230 people commuted from the Castlebar labour catchment to Galway city to work,” Ms Frost added.

Ms Frost noted, “Over the last decade, travel to work patterns changed considerably and when we think back to the height of the Celtic Tiger one of the very obvious signs in Galway was long traffic queues at peak hours on all the city’s approach roads. This new data presents an opportunity to inform future transport planning decisions so that we do not revert to long tail backs as the economy recovers.”

It also found that the age profile of the Galway city labour catchment is one of the youngest in the Western Region and that workers living in the Galway city labour catchment have a higher level of education than the national average.

She concluded, “We welcome the Central Statistics Office’s (CSO) decision to release the data for this study which shows that the Western Region has huge potential to be a regionally smart economy that will help foster Ireland’s return to economic growth.”

 

Background Information

The WDC commissioned the National Institute for Spatial and Regional Analysis (NIRSA) at NUI Maynooth to examine in detail the commuting patterns of those at work in the Western Region. In this publication, Travel to Work and Labour Catchments in the Western Region: A Profile of Seven Town Labour Catchments, the WDC draws on the NIRSA report to compile an examination of the travel to work patterns in each of the principal towns in the seven counties of the Western Region.

This present report identifies 45 labour catchments in the Western Region (counties Donegal, Sligo, Leitrim, Roscommon, Mayo, Galway and Clare) and provides a detailed labour market profile for seven towns; the largest town in each of the seven counties which comprise the Western Region; Galway, Ennis, Sligo, Letterkenny, Castlebar, Roscommon and Carrick-on-Shannon.

Tarraingíonn Tuarascáil nua an WDC aird ar Éilimh Thábhachtacha Iompair i gCathair agus i gContae na Gaillimhe

Cónaíonn breis agus aon cheathrú de na hoibrithe uile i Réigiún an Iarthair, a théann ó Dhún na nGall go dtí an Clár, i gceantar saothair Chathair na Gaillimhe

Tá leibhéal oideachais oibrithe a chónaíonn i gceantar saothair chathair na Gaillimhe níos airde ná an meánleibhéal náisiúnta

– Coimisiún Forbartha an Iarthair

Ba chóir sonraí nua a léiríonn patrúin taistil chun na hoibre oibrithe i nGaillimh a úsáid chun treoir a thabhairt do chinntí amach anseo maidir le pleanáil iompair agus chun an ceantar a chur chun cinn mar shuíomh d’fhiontair.

Sin a thugtar le fios i dtuarascáil nua ó Choimisiún Forbartha an Iarthair (WDC) ina ndearnadh anailís ar shonraí Daonáirimh nár scaoileadh go dtí seo d’fhonn staidéar domhain ar phatrúin taistil chun cathair na Gaillimhe a chur ar fáil.

Agus í ag labhairt ag seoladh na tuarascála, dúirt Lisa McAllister, Príomhfheidhmeannach an WDC, “Is faisnéis thar a bheith luachmhar í an fhaisnéis seo mar cuireann sí anailís urrúnta ar threochtaí príomhúla ar fáil agus aithníonn sí patrúin láidre iompair. Beidh sí an-tábhachtach do dhéantóirí beartais mar cuirfidh sí ar a gcumas cinntí faoin mbonneagar iompair réigiúnach agus faoi lonnú fiontar a bhunú ar shonraí cruinne amach anseo.”

“Tá roinnt torthaí suimiúla sa tuarascáil, mar shampla, déanann i bhfad níos mó daoine comaitéireacht go cathair na Gaillimhe ó thuaisceart an chontae, mar shampla ó cheantar saothair Thuama, ná mar a dhéanann comaitéireacht go cathair na Gaillimhe ón deisceart, is é sin, ó cheantar saothair an Ghoirt. Mar sin, is léir go mbeidh éileamh níos mó ar sheirbhísí iompair poiblí go dtí an chathair ó thuaisceart an chontae, agus inár dtuairim, taispeánann sé sin go soiléir gur chóir an chéad chéim eile de Chonair Iarnróid an Iarthair, ó Bhaile Átha an Rí go Tuaim agus ar aghaidh go Clár Chlainne Mhuiris, a thógáil,” a dúirt sí freisin.

Sa tuarascáil, ‘Travel to Work and Labour Catchments in the Western Region’, tarraingítear aird ar cheantar saothair mór chathair na Gaillimhe agus déantar cur síos ar an soláthar lucht saothair atá ar fáil timpeall ar an gcathair. De réir an WDC, cuireann sí anailís fianaise-bhunaithe ar fáil ar chóir í a úsáid chun treoir a thabhairt do dhéanamh beartas réigiúnach, agus beidh sí ina foinse thábhachtach faisnéise d’fhostóirí, do ghníomhaireachtaí forbartha stáit agus d’údaráis áitiúla agus réigiúnacha.

Mhínigh an tUasal McAllister, cé go ndearnadh a lán plé ar phatrúin chomaitéireachta i gCeantar Bhaile Átha Cliath, go dtí seo ní raibh mórán ar eolas faoi phatrúin chomaitéireachta áitiúla agus réigiúnacha in Iarthar na hÉireann. “Líonann an tuarascáil seo an bhearna sin agus cabhraíonn sí linn tuiscint i bhfad níos fearr a fháil ar cá háit a gcónaíonn agus a n-oibríonn daoine, agus ar an gcineál oibre a dhéanann siad. Leis an eolas sin uile, beimid in ann treoir níos fearr a thabhairt do bheartais maidir le lonnú fiontar agus beimid in ann riachtanais oideachais, oiliúna agus iompair a aithint,” a dúirt sí.

Dúirt Deirdre Frost, Anailíseoir Beartais leis an WDC a d’oibrigh ar an tuarascáil, “Clúdaíonn ceantar saothair chathair na Gaillimhe contae na Gaillimhe, cuid de dheisceart chontae Mhaigh Eo agus cuid de thuaisceart Chontae an Chláir. Tagann formhór sholáthar lucht saothair chathair na Gaillimhe ón gceantar seo. Tá a fhios againn go bhfuil daoine toilteanach achair fhada a thiomáint chun teacht ar fhostaíocht i gcathair na Gaillimhe. Mar shampla, léiríonn an tuarascáil go ndéanann 230 duine comaitéireacht ó cheantar saothair Chaisleán an Bharraigh go cathair na Gaillimhe le haghaidh na hoibre,” a dúirt an tUasal Frost.

Dúirt an tUasal Frost freisin, “Le deich mbliana anuas tá athrú suntasach tagtha ar phatrúin taistil chun na hoibre, agus ní mór a chuimhneamh gurbh é ceann de na comharthaí is soiléire den Tíogar Ceilteach i nGaillimh na scuainí fada tráchta ar shráideanna isteach uile na cathrach le linn buaic-amanna. Tugann na sonraí nua seo deis dúinn treoir a thabhairt do chinntí pleanála iompair amach anseo chun nach gcruthófar scuainí fada tráchta arís nuair a thiocfaidh an geilleagar chuige féin.”

Fuair an tuarascáil freisin go bhfuil próifíl aoise cheantar saothair chathair na Gaillimhe ar cheann de na próifílí is óige i Réigiún an Iarthair agus go bhfuil leibhéal oideachais oibrithe a chónaíonn i gceantar saothair chathair na Gaillimhe níos airde ná an meánleibhéal náisiúnta.

Mar fhocal scoir, dúirt sí, “Cuirimid fáilte mhór roimh chinneadh na Príomh-Oifige Staidrimh (CSO) na sonraí don staidéar seo a scaoileadh, staidéar a léiríonn go bhfuil ar chumas Réigiún an Iarthair gníomhú mar gheilleagar stuama réigiúnach a chabhróidh le hÉirinn fás geilleagrach a bhaint amach arís.”

 

Faisnéis chúlra

Choimisiúnaigh an WDC an Institiúid Náisiúnta um Anailís Spásúil agus Réigiúnach (NIRSA) ag OÉ Má Nuad chun mionscrúdú a dhéanamh ar phatrúin chomaitéireachta na ndaoine a oibríonn i Réigiún an Iarthair. San fhoilseachán seo, Travel to Work and Labour Catchments in the Western Region: A Profile of Seven Town Labour Catchments, úsáideann an WDC tuarascáil an NIRSA chun imscrúdú a dhéanamh ar na patrúin taistil chun na hoibre i ngach ceann de na bailte príomhúla sna seacht gcontae i Réigiún an Iarthair.

Aithníonn an tuarascáil seo 45 ceantar saothair i Réigiún an Iarthair (contaetha: Dún na nGall, Sligeach, Liatroim, Ros Comáin, Maigh Eo, Gaillimh agus an Clár) agus tugann sé próifíl mhionchruinn den mhargadh saothair sna seacht mbaile is mó sna seacht gcontae atá i Réigiún an Iarthar: Gaillimh, Inis, Sligeach, Leitir Ceanainn, Caisleán an Bharraigh, Ros Comáin agus Cora Droma Rúisc.