Work to remove two level crossings on the Lilydale Line in Melbourne’s outer east will begin in December, the first of eight level crossings to go on the Belgrave and Lilydale lines.
The two level crossings are at Manchester Road in Mooroolbark and the Maroondah Highway in Lilydale. Thirteen crashes have occurred at the crossings with one fatality in the last decade.
As part of the level crossing removal, new stations will be built at Mooroolbark and Lilydale and a construction blitz will be held from December 11 to 20.
Foundations for new rail bridges will be installed, along with new underground cables. Another week long closure is indicatively scheduled for the end of summer in 2021.
“We’re not wasting a minute getting on with our critical works on the Lilydale line – delivering better transport connections for passengers and important local jobs for workers as we begin to recover from the pandemic,” said Minister for Transport Infrastructure Jacinta Allan.
Early works on a new multi-deck carpark at Mooroolbark station are already underway. The new carpark will add 450 new and upgraded spots at the station. A temporary carpark is now open to replace the existing carpark which is being redeveloped until 2022.
“Across the state we’re building more than 11,000 new and upgraded commuter parking spaces to make catching the train easier for everyone – and our new carpark at Mooroolbark will double the station’s current capacity,” said Minister for Public Transport Ben Carroll.
The new carpark includes lifts, CCTV, and better lighting, with community feedback providing input to the final design.
Once works are complete, the 53,000 vehicles that use the crossings each day will no longer have to wait while boom gates are down for up to a quarter of the two-hour morning peak.
The existing Mooroolbark station will be moved to the Yarra Valley Railway to continue the rail history of the heritage building.
Initial works have begun to remove the level crossings at Manchester Road, Mooroolbark and Maroondah Highway, Lilydale, in Melbourne’s outer east.
At both sites, works to establish construction sites are beginning, with service relocations and vegetation removal commencing. Fencing and construction workers will arrive in the coming days and weeks.
Most major construction will begin towards the end of 2020. In preparation for this a test pile will be sunk into the ground at the western commuter carpark at Lilydale station to determine the depth needed for foundations for the rail bridge over Maroondah Highway.
In addition to removing the level crossings, two new stations will be built at Mooroolbark and Lilydale, as well as a multi-deck carpark at Mooroolbark to increase capacity to 900 spaces.
Completion is expected by 2022.
In late December 2019, the $496 million contract for both crossings was awarded to an alliance of Laing O’Rouke, Jacobs, and Metro Trains Melbourne.
Work will involve raising the rail line above both roads and elevated platforms at each new station.
Over 53,000 vehicles travel through the two level crossings each day, with boom gates down for a quarter of the morning peak. In the last 10 years there have been 13 crashes, with one fatal incident.
In Dandenong South, the new rail bridge over Greens Road has been updated with new screening to keep maintenance workers safer once the project is complete. The removal of the level crossing there is part of the $679 million Cranbourne Line upgrade, which involves track duplication and more frequent services.
Work sites at Greens Road have been established since March, along with utility works and preparatory works for line duplication.
Once finished, the screens will surround both viaducts which will carry the rail line over Greens Road. An alliance of McConnell Dowell, Arup, Mott MacDonald, and Metro Trains Melbourne will remove the level crossing at Greens Road and duplicate the line between Dandenong and Lynbrook.