Luas on Track to Hit 50 Million Passengers as it Turns 20

Dublin’s iconic Luas light rail service will celebrate its 20th birthday on 30 June, with 2024 set to see its total number of passengers surpass 50 million for the first time.

The Luas line has expanded significantly since making its maiden journey along the Green Line from Sandyford to St Stephen’s Green, today stretching to 43km and servicing 67 stops across the city. In its 20 years, it has carried more than 650 million passengers and, remarkably, more than 400,000 Dubliners now live within 1km of a Luas stop, fuelling the increasing demand for the public transport service.

As well as its excellent safety and reliability record when compared to city tram services around the world, the Luas has had a hugely positive impact on Dubliners’ environmental footprint, producing zero emissions at street level.

Minister for Transport, Eamon Ryan TD, said:

“I was lucky enough to be on the very first Luas journey taken 20 years ago. It was a such a landmark day because it opened up parts of the old Harcourt Line again to the people of South Dublin, but this time with a new modern and reliable light rail service. Since that first trip on the Green Luas, we have added the Red Luas, serving communities out to the southwest of the city, and then we connected the two lines and further extended the Green Line to Broombridge and Cherrywood. The Luas, with its signature sound as it glides along, has become as synonymous with Dublin as many of the city’s other wellknown landmarks.

“The success of Luas has been phenomenal and shows that people enthusiastically choose sustainable travel when it is provided. I look forward to the service’s continued success and expansion. The light rail system will continue to play a key role as we implement the Greater Dublin Area Transport Strategy and in achieving our decarbonisation goals. It also serves as a great model for the other light rail projects that we plan for our regional cities.”

From day one, demand for the service exceeded expectations, with thousands of people lining the streets to hop aboard for their first of many Luas journeys.

Eddie Byrne drove that first tram in 2004 and has since enjoyed a 20-year career of training every Luas driver who’s followed him – more than 400 in total.

Commenting on the Luas’s 20th anniversary and the growth of the service over that time, Eddie said:

“From that very first trip in 2004, it has been an incredible pleasure to play a small part in some extraordinary Luas stories.

“From transporting the bride and groom on the happiest day of their lives, concert goers to see their heroes, and essential front-line staff during the difficult times of Covid-19, we really have seen it all over the past 20 years. “The extensions to the trams and the lines are great indicators of how successful the Luas has been for the people of Dublin. Driving the Luas and training the next generation of drivers has given me a fascinating insight into our wonderful city and I know it’ll continue to play a key role in the fabric of Dublin for many years to come.”

The Luas network has continually grown to serve communities across Dublin, opening fast, reliable access to jobs and recreational activities to a huge number of people.

Full Press Release available

28.06.2024 Luas 20 Year Anniversary Press Release