Williamstown

Williamstown level crossing to be replaced by rail trench

The Williamstown line will be lowered under Ferguson Street to replace the current level crossing in North Williamstown.

The rail-under-road design was decided upon after community feedback expressed a clear preference for such a design.

As part of the works, North Williamstown Station will also be renewed, with lowered platforms, plaza areas, and landscaping. Community feedback is being sought on the design of the station precinct.

Minister for Transport Infrastructure Jacinta Allan said that it was time for the dangerous level crossing to go.

“This crossing has been the scene tragedy and puts the community at risk every single day – we’re getting rid of it.”

In the past decade there have been five near misses, and the 110 trains that travel through the crossing each weekday cause delays for the 25,000 motorists who wish to cross the rail line.

“Our big build is removing traffic bottlenecks and building a better rail network across the west and right around Melbourne – and it’s creating vital jobs as we rebuild from coronavirus,” said Allan.

The Ferguson Street level crossing removal is one of six level crossing removals in Melbourne’s west on the Werribee and Williamstown lines. In Werribee, crews are preparing the area by relocating underground services and moving traffic lights to enable the construction of a new rail bridge.

Construction in Williamstown will begin in early 2021 and the crossing will be removed by 2022.

Rail delivered to Coburg
New railway track has been hauled to Coburg as part of the Bell to Moreland level crossing removal project.

Made in Whyalla, South Australia, the 10 kilometres of rail strings were transported in 27 metre lengths to a depot in Spotswood, Victoria. There, the strings were welded together into 165-metre lengths, before being hauled by rail to the work site on a 210-metre long train pulled by a diesel locomotive.

The rail will be stored on site before they are placed on the 2.5km elevated rail bridge. The bridge will replace level crossings at Bell, Munro, and Reynard streets in Coburg, and Moreland Road in Brunswick.

Williamstown

Rail line slated for change at Williamstown level crossing removal

The Victorian government is about to release design options for the raising or lowering of the rail line at the Ferguson Street level crossing.

The level crossing is located in Williamstown, on the Williamstown Line south west of Melbourne.

A preliminary design assessment found that road-based options were not appropriate for the crossing, which is used by 110 trains and 25,000 vehicles a day.

According to Melissa Horne, Member for Williamstown and Minister for Public Transport, community feedback will inform the design.

“Our project experts will take the community’s feedback and engineering investigations on board and keep everyone informed as they come up with the best way to remove this level crossing.”

Minister for Transport Infrastructure Jacinta Allan said that the level crossing will be removed by 2022.

“We’ve heard loud and clear from locals that they want this level crossing gone for good – and we’ll continue to work with the community as we get on and deliver what we promised,” said Allan.

The current stage of consultation is the second in the project’s lifetime, with initial consultation drawing 260 online feedback forms, and 200 face-to-face consultations, in addition to updates, mail, and doorknocks. The project found that efficient and safe pedestrian and cycling connections, local heritage and simplifying local roads were prioritised by the community.

Preliminary designs under active considerations show the rail line lowered into a trench underneath Ferguson Street or raised via an overpass, with the station also updated in each design.