50 level crossings to be removed

 
  James974 Deputy Commissioner

I think the amount of money being spent on this could be spent better elsewhere. look at those ramps that stop cars going onto crossing around the world, surely a lot cheaper than this politicians vanity project?
b class diesel
Vanity: excessive pride in or admiration of one's own appearance or achievements.

I don't see the issue politician priding these railway works, this is one of the biggest rail project in recent Melbourne history. And no doubt expensive but the benefits a widespread.

Pedestrians, cycling, commuter, driver benefit from new paths and connections, less travel time.
Local business owners and residents benefit by making the area more accessible and revitalised
And potentially developers, investors will be attracted to the area boosting the economy and increasing the density of suburbia.
Also enables busier lines to operate much higher frequencies without delaying road traffic (only applies to Dandenong/Sunbury corridor in current program)

As for could be spent elsewhere, if it were to be spent elsewhere, it would be more likely to be spent on road upgrades and another freeway than another rail project.

Be thankful this is happening, it definitely the right project since nowhere else has 180 level crossings on its metro rail, European cities have it over and underground. It makes our rail network like a light rail system and not a full developed metro system. Whenever all the busier crossings are removed then it become a waste and not worth removing the rest and instead closing them off.

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  b class diesel Station Staff

You think wrong.
"LancedDendrite"


Only voicing my opinion sir
  b class diesel Station Staff

My apologies to all concerned.
  James974 Deputy Commissioner

My apologies to all concerned.
b class diesel
You don't need to apologise, this is place for discussion and informative arguments on rail topics around Australia and beyond. You may have misjudged this project as another political pork barreling projects to gain seats, but in general despite the list of crossings being in marginal areas, most of them actually make sense, it terms of congestion, arterial network and rail network.

If anything is a waste of money it would be the high speed rail proposal that keeps popping up in the news. That is way to expensive to implement and the benefits would be minimal at best. That is what is called a Vanity project, Labor prided itself on the study and nothing happened under Liberals. Despite no funding, politician like the mention this project just before the election and never mention it again. Thats a perfect example of a project done only for political intent, not public interests.
  rokaifly Station Staff

It's about easing road congestion and creating a less divided community, not creating safer level crossings
  Lad_Porter Deputy Commissioner

Location: Yarra Glen
It's about easing road congestion and creating a less divided community, not creating safer level crossings
rokaifly
It's also about removing the constraints associated with crossings, which include the risk of accidents.  You don't make a crossing safer by removing it - once it is gone it no longer exists, therefore neither safe nor unsafe from then on.
  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland
I see the Up ramp for the Mile Creek / Chandler Road elevated section has started, with piles of spoil been dumped In piles along the ramp area.

The gap between the new Mile Creek bridge and the Chandler Road bridge looks rather odd, but I guess that will all fill up with spoil.

I wonder If the spoil will come from the Clayton Tip were all the spoil that came from the Ormond - Bentleigh project was dumped ?

Centre Road Clayton had 3 of the 4 beams placed across It last night.

There are 13 spans between Centre Road and Clayton Station that are yet to have their beams Installed (probably 52 beams)
  HardWorkingMan Chief Commissioner

Location: Echuca
It's about easing road congestion and creating a less divided community, not creating safer level crossings
It's also about removing the constraints associated with crossings, which include the risk of accidents.  You don't make a crossing safer by removing it - once it is gone it no longer exists, therefore neither safe nor unsafe from then on.
Lad_Porter
it's also about clearing up gridlock on both road and rail.  Rail can run trains more frequently as they don't need to worry about letting the traffic clear.

Remember road is also used by emergency vehicles. A couple of minutes in arrival time of an ambulance can be the difference between life and death. For a fire truck between minor damage to one property and several properties being gutted and lives lost.

Never in the history of rail has it been appropriate for every trip.  It has always been accompanied by other forms of transport
  Lad_Porter Deputy Commissioner

Location: Yarra Glen
I wasn't going to spell it out, but all of that is what I meant by "Constraints".
  reubstar6 Locomotive Driver

Here's something I have been meaning to ask this forum. Assuming that these 50 get done (well on track), and that the current Labor government remains in power after the next election: If they were to provide another 25 or 50 level crossing removals (perhaps an election promise going into the 2022 election), which ones would you put in the program?

I would suggest (I'll just go by the suburb):
-Glen Huntly duo (especially TS)
-Brighton Beach crossing
-Kensington
-Moonee Ponds
-Pascoe Vale
-Dandenong (just after station)
-Mahoneys Road
-Sunbury crossing (near station)
-Surrey Hills crossings
-Old Geelong Road (if that's what it is called)
-Riversdale road TS (I don't care if no one uses the Alamein line)
- Kooyong (?) TS

There are probably numerous more that I have forgotten. This is just a quick list I have come up with off the top of my head with no research (apologies). Anyone want to add to this? There are a few that could be done really cheaply and easily, but probably don't justify their removal (e.g. Devon Rd). Perhaps some country crossings should be removed, but for the sake of simplicity, let's just restrict this to Melbourne and close surrounds (e.g. Bacchus Marsh, Wallan, etc.).
  LancedDendrite Chief Commissioner

Location: Trapped in a meeting with Rhonda and Karsten
Here's something I have been meaning to ask this forum. Assuming that these 50 get done (well on track), and that the current Labor government remains in power after the next election: If they were to provide another 25 or 50 level crossing removals (perhaps an election promise going into the 2022 election), which ones would you put in the program?
reubstar6
  • Glen Huntly Rd and Neerim Rd, Glen Huntly (Frankston line) - Tram Squares are the devil's work and need to be removed post-haste; this is the most logical one to go for next. Glenferrie Rd, Kooyong has problematic human terrain (it's toff central) and Riversdale Rd, Camberwell doesn't get enough traffic by road, tram or rail to be an urgent priority.
  • Coolstore Rd, Croydon (Lilydale Line) - already being planned by the local council, area is politically marginal and it's a decent urban renewal opportunity.
  • Union Rd, Surrey Hills + Mont Albert Rd, Mont Albert (Lilydale/Belgrave lines) - Union Rd is dangerous, both are the last remaining level crossings on the line between Ringwood and the city. Significant value capture potential through redevelopment of the station sites could make the projects close to cost-neutral.
  • All (10!) remaining level crossings that aren't having removal actively planned between Royal Park and Coburg on the Upfield line - Skyrail Mk 2. A value capture funding model through site redevelopment could also be used here - it's already been used at Jewell Station.
  • Old Geelong Rd, Hoppers Crossing (Werribee line) - good for freight and passenger services and a natural extension of the works being done around Werribee Station (Cherry St + Werribee St level crossing removals)
  • Webster St, Dandenong (Pakenham/Cranbourne lines) and Greens Rd, Dandenong South (Cranbourne line) - a natural extension of the CTD/Skyrail works being done at the moment. Greens Rd is a major freight arterial and Webster St will be choked with the number of extra services being run once Melbourne Metro opens.
  Adogs Train Controller

Regards which next - to aid discussion, Daniel Bowen has a comprehensive list on his website of current level crossings with "risk score" due to traffic movements etc.

Link here: https://www.danielbowen.com/2017/09/27/level-crossing-removals-status/

Next most dangerous crossing that isn't on the initial list of 50 is Macaulay Rd in Kensington (the Craigieburn line crossing, not the Upfield one) followed by Union Rd in Surrey Hills.
  reubstar6 Locomotive Driver

Yes my post came after reading that article and I thought that I'd like to see what other people thought.
  James974 Deputy Commissioner

Yes my post came after reading that article and I thought that I'd like to see what other people thought.
reubstar6
Yes great idea, but you know the funding must be put forward as well as a timeframe. Current works are still gong to run for another few years.

The level crossings on the future Mernda line are only to get busier, so maybe those few may be included, as well as those along the future Melton rail line when it gets electrified.
  historian Assistant Commissioner

The stars finally aligned and I had the opportunity to watch the skyrail machine to see how it actually erects a span. It's b*y impressive.

Imagine you have four piers A, B, C, and D. The viaduct is completed beyond D back to Murrumbeena where the beams are assembled. The task is to place the next beam between Piers C and D. There are two machines: a straddle crane which carts the assembled beams from Murrumbeena to the piers, and a carrying beam which temporarily spans the piers.

The carrying beam is massive; it's about 2 metres wide, by about 3 metres deep, and about 110 metres long. At the start of our cycle, the beam spans piers B, C, and D, with about an 11 metre extension past Pier D. Supporting the carrying beam are three adjustable supports, two on Pier B and one on Pier C, and a support on the permanent viaduct at Pier D. Each adjustable support occupies half of the space on the top of a pier. The carrying beam itself rests on rollers on the top of each support. Under that are two hand operated vertical jacks. Under that are two hydraulic horizontal pistons. The jacks and the pistons allow the vertical and horizontal position of the carrying beam to be precisely adjusted. On top of the carrying beam is a cart. It seems small, but is actually about 10 metres long. It can run along the top of the beam on *very* heavy duty rollers. At the start of the cycle it is situated on the extension of the beam past Pier D - over the completed part of the viaduct.

The straddle crane is also enormous - it can carry a complete permanent beam which is about 45 metres long. I was told the permanent beam and straddle crane together weigh 400 - 500 tonnes, but that's unconfirmed. The straddle crane has two bogies - one at each end of the beam. Each bogie rides on eight massive pneumatic tyres, arranged in two rows of four.

When the straddle crane arrives at Pier D it moves forward so that the front bogie is over the cart on top of the beam (which, remember stuck out about 11 metres beyond Pier D over the completed viaduct). The front bogie is then attached to the cart (I know not know, but disconnecting it involved pneumatic tools).

The front bogie of the straddle crane, on the cart, is then moved along the carrying beam until it is beyond Pier C. The wheels of the front bogie at this point are dangling in mid air. A most impressive sight. At the end of this, the rear bogie is at the end of the completed section of the viaduct and the beam the straddle crane is carrying is above its final position. But the carrying beam is in the way.

The next step is to slide the carrying beam forward so that it spans Piers A, B, and C, leaving a gap between Piers C and D for the permanent beam. Remember that while it is being moved, it is supporting the front bogie of the straddle crane and half the weight of the permanent beam. The creaking of the beam as it is rolled forward is impressive. As the carrying beam is being moved forward, it carries with it one of the adjustable supports on Pier B. When the front of the beam gets to Pier A, this support is located over the front half of the pier. The carrying beam is then carefully aligned.

With the carrying beam out of the way, the permanent beam can be lowered onto Piers C and D and fixed in place.

The carrying beam is then moved back about 11 metres, so that the front bogie of the straddle crane is on newly added permanent beam. The front bogie is then disconnected from the cart, and the straddle crane returns to Murrumbeena to pick up the next beam (which will be used to extend the other viaduct).

The final step is to move the supports up. At the end of placing the beam, the supports are at Piers A, B, and D. The supports have upper rollers that roll along the top of lower flange of the carrying beam. The jacks on the support at D are lowered; this actually raises the feet of the support off the pier. It then rolls along the lower flange of the carrying beam to Pier C where it is located. The existing support at Pier C is similarly relocated to Pier A.

And the cycle starts again.
  steve195 Train Controller

By my estimation, they are within a few spans of the halfway mark between Murrembeena and Carnegie.
  steve195 Train Controller

According to an LXRA flyer distributed this week, there are going to be substation upgrades at 9 locations along the Pakenham and Cranbourne lines, as well as the construction of 12 new substations. (This work overlaps with the HCMT project)

Does anyone know how many substations currently exist along the line, and how old they are?
  ARodH Train Controller

Location: East Oakleigh, Vic
According to an LXRA flyer distributed this week, there are going to be substation upgrades at 9 locations along the Pakenham and Cranbourne lines, as well as the construction of 12 new substations. (This work overlaps with the HCMT project)

Does anyone know how many substations currently exist along the line, and how old they are?
steve195
I'm only aware of three on the Pakenham, one near the end of the current wires, one up just up from Huntingdale Station & the last just up from Westal Station. Though going by Google Earth there could be one down from the Toomuc creek bridge.
  jdekorte Assistant Commissioner

Location: Near Caulfield Station
According to an LXRA flyer distributed this week, there are going to be substation upgrades at 9 locations along the Pakenham and Cranbourne lines, as well as the construction of 12 new substations. (This work overlaps with the HCMT project)

Does anyone know how many substations currently exist along the line, and how old they are?
steve195
I'm not exactly sure how many substations there are between Dandenong & Pakenham, but here goes...

Officer, Beaconsfield, Hallam, Narre Warren, Dandenong East - all installed in the 1950's for the Gippsland electrification project. One would suspect these will all be replaced or upgraded.

Pakenham - installed much later to provide extra power after Cardinia Rd Station was opened - likely to be upgraded.

As for existing substations between Dandenong - Caulfield:

Dandenong - has already been replaced and is operational  - the new substation is near the sidings on the up end of the yard area. New overhead structures and wires have been installed in recent weeks.

Noble Park - is due to be replaced with a new substation located where the line drops to ground level near Mile Creek.

Springvale - likely to be upgraded although much of this was done for the grade separation project.

Westall - likely to be upgraded although much of this was done for the triplication project.

Clayton - new substation - (Works notice: http://levelcrossings.vic.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0009/136782/LX-CD9-LETTER-Clayton-substation-works.pdf)

Oakleigh - most likely to be upgraded.

Murrumbeena - new substation (to be located under one of the viaduct spans and is most likely a replacement for the Hughesdale tie/substation)

Caulfield - most likely to be upgraded

Toorak - most likely to be upgraded

Cremorne - most likely to be upgraded.

I'm open to correction on this as I'm basing my predications on local knowledge and current construction activities. I'm not exactly sure when the substations were built.  A good resource for looking at Melbourne traction substation is a photo gallery compiled by Marcus Wong: https://railgallery.wongm.com/melbourne-traction-substations/
  Gman_86 Chief Commissioner

Location: Melton, where the sparks dare not roam!
Here's something I have been meaning to ask this forum. Assuming that these 50 get done (well on track), and that the current Labor government remains in power after the next election: If they were to provide another 25 or 50 level crossing removals (perhaps an election promise going into the 2022 election), which ones would you put in the program?
  • Glen Huntly Rd and Neerim Rd, Glen Huntly (Frankston line) - Tram Squares are the devil's work and need to be removed post-haste; this is the most logical one to go for next. Glenferrie Rd, Kooyong has problematic human terrain (it's toff central) and Riversdale Rd, Camberwell doesn't get enough traffic by road, tram or rail to be an urgent priority.
  • Coolstore Rd, Croydon (Lilydale Line) - already being planned by the local council, area is politically marginal and it's a decent urban renewal opportunity.
  • Union Rd, Surrey Hills + Mont Albert Rd, Mont Albert (Lilydale/Belgrave lines) - Union Rd is dangerous, both are the last remaining level crossings on the line between Ringwood and the city. Significant value capture potential through redevelopment of the station sites could make the projects close to cost-neutral.
  • All (10!) remaining level crossings that aren't having removal actively planned between Royal Park and Coburg on the Upfield line - Skyrail Mk 2. A value capture funding model through site redevelopment could also be used here - it's already been used at Jewell Station.
  • Old Geelong Rd, Hoppers Crossing (Werribee line) - good for freight and passenger services and a natural extension of the works being done around Werribee Station (Cherry St + Werribee St level crossing removals)
  • Webster St, Dandenong (Pakenham/Cranbourne lines) and Greens Rd, Dandenong South (Cranbourne line) - a natural extension of the CTD/Skyrail works being done at the moment. Greens Rd is a major freight arterial and Webster St will be choked with the number of extra services being run once Melbourne Metro opens.
LancedDendrite
All good, to those I would add:

Fitzgerald Rd,
Station Rd/ Mt Derrimut Rd (Deer Park Station)  
Robinsons Rd.

All Along the Ballarat line where it shares tracks with the Geelong line.

Between 0700 and 0759 there are 20 trains (stopping and express) for the hour scheduled through Deer Park station. These 3 crossings are only going to get busier.

Along with the 17 LanceDendrite listed, this would bring it to another 20, along with the current 50, that would give us a grand total of 70 crossings.
  duttonbay Minister for Railways

The stars finally aligned and I had the opportunity to watch the skyrail machine to see how it actually erects a span. It's b*y impressive.

...

And the cycle starts again.
historian
Excellent report. How long do you estimate the cycle takes?
  gary george Beginner

Old geelong road Hopperscrosssing was deemed not necessary by the powers that be  , at any time of day you can be held up for some time waiting for a train night time pear is worse.  Yet the deemed Werribbee street needed doing which is a full barrier crossing with full intergrated traffic lights , now only rail traffic is broad guage  night time freights by2 each direction occasional diverted v line pass, empty car moves geelong to newport. not many at all during day light. Standard guage has a few trains during daylight in each direction. occasionally you might catch a broad guage train during daylight  but overall not that busy train wise . Most vehicle hold up is the number of roads entering the area and light sequence for various directions altogether a waste of money. Like the canellation of the full junction at manor that would of allowed electric trains to travel as far as whyndam station
  Adogs Train Controller

Old geelong road Hopperscrosssing was deemed not necessary by the powers that be  , at any time of day you can be held up for some time waiting for a train night time pear is worse.  Yet the deemed Werribbee street needed doing which is a full barrier crossing with full intergrated traffic lights , now only rail traffic is broad guage  night time freights by2 each direction occasional diverted v line pass, empty car moves geelong to newport. not many at all during day light. Standard guage has a few trains during daylight in each direction. occasionally you might catch a broad guage train during daylight  but overall not that busy train wise . Most vehicle hold up is the number of roads entering the area and light sequence for various directions altogether a waste of money. Like the canellation of the full junction at manor that would of allowed electric trains to travel as far as whyndam station
gary george

Of the ones not yet on the list for removal, Old Geelong Rd in Hoppers has third highest "risk" score (2,947), after Macaulay Rd (3,686) and Union Rd (3,448).  So clearly it would be a priority in the next batch.

However, Werribee St on Daniel Bowen's list has a risk score of (4,540), quite a bit higher than all three of those.  Not sure if his stats were from before the RRL was completed.

According to D Bowen's list, the "least urgent" one on the list already being done, is Camp Rd in Campbellfield, with a risk score of about 200.
  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland

Of the ones not yet on the list for removal, Old Geelong Rd in Hoppers has third highest "risk" score (2,947), after Macaulay Rd (3,686) and Union Rd (3,448).  So clearly it would be a priority in the next batch.

However, Werribee St on Daniel Bowen's list has a risk score of (4,540), quite a bit higher than all three of those.  Not sure if his stats were from before the RRL was completed.

According to D Bowen's list, the "least urgent" one on the list already being done, is Camp Rd in Campbellfield, with a risk score of about 200
Adogs
The likes of Werribee Street and Old Geelong Road would have heavy freight trains charge through the crossing at speeds of up to 115 km/h, any cars cued on the crossing stuck In grid locked traffic wouldn't stand a chance !

Old Geelong Road probably has a greater risk of pedestrians taking silly risks getting to and from the station platforms.
  James974 Deputy Commissioner

Reservior High street level crossing solutions have been released, both do not have the Edward and Broadway connection to replace five way interchange??? If you like to submit feedback to let the LXRA know this is a great idea, you can do so on their your level crossings website.

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