The dangerous and congested level crossings at Blackburn and Heatherdale Road in Melbourne’s east are gone – the ninth and tenth crossings removed by the Andrews Labor Government.
Premier Daniel Andrews joined Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan at the brand new Heatherdale Station today, the eleventh new station opened by the Labor Government in just over two years.
Trains will return tomorrow morning after a 41-day construction blitz where 800 staff excavated 80 Olympic swimming pools-worth of soil and rock to lower the line so trains can safely run under the road for the first time.
The Blackburn and Heatherdale Roads will also reopen to traffic tomorrow, free from the boom gates that held motorists hostage for an hour every morning peak.
The $481 million package, which also removed two level crossings in St Albans, has also upgraded Blackburn Station - installing a new drainage system to reduce flooding in the underpass and improving access in and around the station.
Two new pedestrian bridges have been built at Purches Street in Mitcham and Cottage Street in Blackburn, and a third is under construction at King Street/Oliver Avenue in Blackburn, making it quicker and safer to cross the tracks.
The Labor Government is not wasting a moment getting rid of Victoria’s worst level crossings – ten crossings are already gone, ten more are under construction and another seven removals will start this year.
While Blackburn and Heatherdale Roads will reopen on Monday morning, some night road closures will be required to complete the road works, and landscaping, car parks and other finishing works at the stations will continue until mid-year.
For more information about the project, or to sign up for updates, visit levelcrossings.vic.gov.au.
Quotes attributable to Premier Daniel Andrews
“Two more of these relics of the past are now consigned to history where they belong.”
“We promised to remove 50 dangerous and congested level crossings and we are getting it done.”
Quote attributable to Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan
“This huge project is not only removing dangerous and congested level crossings, it’s rebuilding stations and improving access to public transport across Melbourne.”
Quote attributable to Member for Eastern Metropolitan Region Shaun Leane
“I thank the project team for their tireless work, and locals for their patience. This has been a huge job, but it’s now finished, the crossings are gone and our community is safer and less congested.”
Reviewed 19 August 2020