The biggest level crossing removal blitz in the state’s history is in full swing on the Frankston Line, as works continue to remove three dangerous and congested level crossings and build two new train stations.
Premier Daniel Andrews, Minister for Transport Infrastructure Jacinta Allan and Member for Mordialloc Tim Richardson today visited Mentone, where crews have been working around the clock to excavate more than two kilometres of new rail trenches.
The boom gates at Cheltenham and Mentone could be down for up to 49 minutes in the morning peak – causing delays and frustration for the 38,000 vehicles that travelled through these crossings each day.
In the past two weeks, workers have removed more than 74 Olympic-sized swimming pools of soil for the new lowered rail line. The works are being delivered by a team of 1,700 workers, with 50 trucks an hour transporting the excavated soil and six of the biggest cranes in Australia lifting beams and moving material into the trenches.
With excavation now complete, workers will soon begin reinforcing the walls of the trench with 4,000 cubic metres of concrete before beginning to lay the tracks and signalling for the new Frankston line.
Locals in Mentone can already walk over the new rail trench at Balcombe Road to get a birds-eye view of the massive scale of work underway.
In Cheltenham, a major milestone was reached today with Park Road now open to traffic and free of boom gate delays for the first time. Charman Road will reopen later this week, making travel around the area easier and safer.
Work is also steaming ahead on the new Mentone Station, where platforms are being installed and beams are being lifted for the new heritage deck over the rail line, which will create new open space for the community.
When trains resume on 27 July, three level crossings will be gone for good at Park and Charman roads in Cheltenham, and Balcombe Road in Mentone, with the new Mentone and Cheltenham stations to open in August.
Works at Cheltenham and Mentone are part of a massive $3 billion investment on the Frankston line, which includes the removal of 18 level crossings, with eight already gone, and building 12 new stations.
Quote attributable to Premier of Victoria Daniel Andrews
“Coronavirus has had huge impacts on our community and our economy, but our building program hasn’t stopped supporting jobs and delivering the projects our state needs.”
Quote attributable to Minister for Transport Infrastructure Jacinta Allan
“It’s been a huge team effort so far, with the 1,700 workers getting on and removing these level crossings as part of our Frankston line blitz.”
Quote attributable to Member for Mordialloc Tim Richardson
“We promised to remove these dangerous and congested level crossings and we’re delivering – transforming our local area and making it safer.”
Reviewed 26 June 2020