Major construction has begun on the Andrews Labor Government’s removal of the Centre, North and McKinnon Road level crossings, with all three set to be completed months ahead of schedule.
Premier Daniel Andrews joined Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan and local Member Nick Staikos at North Road level crossing today, where boom gates are down for half an hour in the morning peak.
In a major win for motorists, train passengers and the local community, the construction schedule for the removal of these dangerous and congested crossings has been accelerated.
The project’s major construction campaign, which had previously been scheduled for the end of next year, has been brought forward to mid-2016, meaning the crossings will be removed earlier in 2017 than expected.
This means the 34 day closure of the Frankston line between Caulfield and Moorabbin will occur before other closures from the nine level crossings set to go from the Cranbourne Pakenham rail line.
This coordination will ensure traffic can continue to flow throughout Melbourne’s south-east while the Labor Government gets on with removing our worst level crossings.
There will, however, be other unavoidable impacts on passengers while the level crossings are removed, including the temporary closure of one of the three tracks on the Frankston line from 16 November 2015 to mid-2016.
During this time, express trains will stop at all stations during the morning and afternoon peaks, and the four weekday express services will be cancelled. McKinnon, Ormond and Bentleigh stations will also be closed for several months next year while the new stations are built.
Removal of the three level crossings at North, McKinnon and Centre roads, and the rebuilding of the three neighbouring stations, is being delivered as part of a $524 million package of works that includes the removal of the level crossing at Burke Road in Glen Iris and the rebuilding of Gardiner Station.
For more detail about the Andrews Labor Government’s plan to reduce congestion, improve safety, run more trains and create 4,500 jobs, visit levelcrossings.vic.gov.au.
Quotes attributable to Premier Daniel Andrews
“We’re getting on with our project to remove the 50 most dangerous and congested level crossings, and these three crossings will be delivered even faster than we had planned.”
“These level crossings hold up cars, slow down trains and put lives at risk – accelerating construction will make these local communities less congested and safer, sooner.”
Quote attributable to Minister for Public Transport and Employment Jacinta Allan
“Removing these level crossings is not only good for local safety and road congestion, it’s also good for public transport and jobs – and we’re getting on with it.”
Quotes attributable to Member for Bentleigh Nick Staikos
“Our community has been held hostage by these dangerous, congested relics of the past for too long. I’m proud the Andrews Labor Government is getting rid of them once and for all.”