More than fifty of Melbourne’s most dangerous and congested level crossings are officially gone for good, marking a golden milestone for the Victorian Government’s city-changing Level Crossing Removal Project – delivered 12 months ahead of schedule.
In 2014 we promised to remove 50 dangerous and congested level crossings by 2022 to get people home to their families safer and sooner. Since then, the Level Crossing Removal Project has changed the face of metropolitan Melbourne – taking 54 of these dangerous death traps off the roads, saving 37 hours each day in the morning peak, delivering 31 new and upgraded train stations, unlocking 14 MCGs of open space, putting more than 1.9 million new plants in the ground and building 42km of new walking and bike paths.
Importantly, over the past six years, the project has racked up almost 62 million work hours.
With more than 6,900 people currently working across 25 sites, level crossing removals are providing secure jobs for Victorians at a time when they matter most.
In the last 12 months alone, 15 level crossings have been removed and seven stations built – an unprecedented feat in such a short amount of time – improving safety, reducing congestion and allowing more trains, more often. Five more level crossings were consigned to history on the Frankston line this weekend – Edithvale Road, Edithvale; Chelsea Road, Chelsea; Swanpool Avenue, Chelsea; Argyle Avenue, Chelsea and Bondi Road, Bonbeach – with three new, modern stations springing up on the line following a 70-day construction blitz.
It means 16 level crossings are now gone for good on the Frankston line, with 20 due to be gone by 2025. This week, level crossings have also been removed at Manchester Road, Mooroolbark and Maroondah Highway, Lilydale.
Traffic now flows freely beneath two new rail bridges and trains have returned to the Lilydale line – creating a smoother trip for more than 53,000 vehicles travelling in these areas each day.
We’re not finished yet – we’re determined to deliver our 2018 election commitment to remove 75 by 2025. In addition to that, earlier this year, we funded the removal of 10 more level crossings – including another two on the Frankston line – pushing the total up to 85 by 2025.
The level crossings at Old Geelong Road, Hoppers Crossing and Ferguson Street, Williamstown will also be a thing of the past by the end of this year – putting an end to waiting at boom gates and boosting safety for these communities, with 56 level crossings gone by next month.
On average, one level crossing is being removed every four weeks in 2021.
Construction continues on 17 level crossing removals across Melbourne, with another 15 in planning – all to be gone for good in just under four years.
Quotes attributable to Premier Daniel Andrews
“We say what we do, and do what we say. We said we’d remove 50 level crossings by 2022 – and we’ve well and truly smashed that goal.”
“We’re not finished yet. We’ll continue to remove these dangerous death traps, get you home to your family safer and sooner, and run more trains more often – all while creating thousands of jobs.”
Quotes attributable to Minister for Transport Infrastructure Jacinta Allan
“By reaching today’s golden milestone, we’ve delivered on our election promise to remove 50 dangerous and congested level crossings across Melbourne by 2022 – and we’ve done it a year earlier than planned.”
“We thank the thousands of passengers for their patience as our hard-working crews have worked around the clock to get this job done.”
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