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Construction will begin next year on two level crossing removals in Glen Huntly.
The level crossings at Neerim and Glen Huntly roads will be gone by 2023 and the project completed by 2024, a year ahead of schedule.
The crossings will be replaced by lowering the Frankston Line into a trench, and constructing new road bridges for both crossings.
Removing these level crossings will only benefit the 20,000 vehicles that travel through the two level crossings a day, but also improve journeys for tram passengers on route 67, which crosses the rail line at Glen Huntly Road. The crossing at Glen Huntly Road is one of Melbourne’s last tram squares, a manually operated crossing used by trains and trams, which slows trains down significantly.
200 trains pass through the crossings each day, causing the boom gates to be down for half the morning peak.
In addition to the level crossing removals, the new Glen Huntly station will be part of a new precinct, increasing connectivity and improving community safety, said Victorian Minister for Transport Infrastructure Jacinta Allan.
“Our level crossing removal project isn’t just getting rid of those dangerous and congested boom gates – we’re delivering new train stations, more open space and new pedestrian and cycling infrastructure.”
The two crossings in Glen Huntly are the last to go on the Frankston Line, and when complete, the 18 crossings between Flinders Street and Moorabbin will be gone.
A number of new stations have had their designs revealed, with Bell and Preston stations being upgraded with colourful designs that reference the local communities.
For North Williamstown station, a priority was maintaining the village feel of the local area. Improvements to lighting, landscaping and crossings, will improve local connectivity and safety.
The new Glenroy Station, which is part of the level crossing removal at Glenroy Road, two sides of the rail line will be reconnected for the first time in 100 years.
“We’ve removed half of the 75 level crossings we promised, well ahead of schedule – and with works continuing in line with strict safety protocol during the pandemic, we’re not wasting a minute getting the rest gone for good,” said Allan.
Glenroy Road’s level crossing is now set for removal, becoming the second crossing to be removed on Melbourne’s Craigieburn line as part of the Victorian Government’s Level Crossings Removal Project (LCRP).
The rail line will be lowered below Glenroy Road to accommodate the removal. The government stated that this method would be the most feasible design option as it avoided significant levels of compulsory property acquisition while also suiting the topography of the area. A new station will also be built as part of the works, which are set to conclude in 2022.
The government stated that Glenroy Road was one of North Melbourne’s most congested roads, with around 19,000 vehicles passing the level crossing each day.
“We are now undertaking further technical investigations. Later this year, we will be back out with more information and locals will have the opportunity to provide feedback on the project,” VicGov said in a statement.
“The boom gates at this level crossing can be down for up to 43 per cent of the morning peak, causing congestion for up to a kilometre along Glenroy Road. Delays will worsen as more trains and cars travel through Glenroy in the future.”
Acting Premier Lisa Neville, acting Minister for Transport Infrastructure Melissa Horne and Member for Pascoe Vale Lizzie Blandthorn convened at Glenroy Station to aonnounce the project
“This dangerous and congested level crossing holds up thousands at Glenroy Road each day – it’s got to go,” Neville said.
“This will make a real difference for people in Glenroy, making it quicker, easier and safer to get around.”
The LCRP has so far removed 29 of a planned 75 dangerous and congested level crossings in Melbourne, with the remainder set for removal by 2025.