Another epistle. Please let me know if you have had enough ... I will still take photos, but don't have to post them here.
I made a major inspection of the works today. Firstly we walked up to Mitcham, then down to the Cochrane Rd overbridge, and back along Brunswick Road. During the afternoon I returned to Mitcham, walked from Whitehorse Rd along a dead-end street to the works between Mitcham and Rooks Road, followed that up with a look at Rooks Road from the north side, and then drove via Springvale Road to Station Street, and walked back to Rooks Road.
From the carpark on the up side of Mitcham (now reserved for site workers) I was able to look along the line towards Heatherdale. Unfortunately an empty truck created more dust than I wanted - I called in later and the view wasn't as good due the arrangement of the various pieces of equipment:[img]http://i164.photobucket.com/albums/u23/duttonbay/RP/20140108-121930_zpsc94b5bda.jpg[/img]
There's a house off an access road running alongside the railway off Church Street (which, BTW, has no church anywhere in the vicinity), and after walking through the weeds in front of the house I could see where the overhead from the Heatherdale direction was tied off. [img]http://i164.photobucket.com/albums/u23/duttonbay/RP/20140108-122826_zpse228f15b.jpg[/img]
I noticed a new signal at the Cochrane Road bridge. Later during my inspection I noticed many new signals - not just being replaced with LEDs, but new masts. I suspect that with no level crossings the line between Nunawading and Heatherdale can be resignalled without the need to have protection of the crossings:[img]http://i164.photobucket.com/albums/u23/duttonbay/RP/20140108-123838_zps02d13ed6.jpg[/img]
Walking along Brunswick Road there is no fence along the railway, and I was able to grab a photo showing the end of track. As you can see they are working on the roadbed (sub-roadbed?) and as far as the alignment is concerned it all looks done through to Mitcham now. I would guess that sleepers and rails will be brought in from this end. Incidentally, I found it curious that the overhead stanchions are prefixed with an H (for Healesville) while the auto signals are prefixed with an L (for Lilydale):[img]http://i164.photobucket.com/albums/u23/duttonbay/RP/20140108-124601_zpsd73f270c.jpg[/img]
The cantilever overhead structure which features in many photos from Mitcham Road is located pretty much at a car park off Brunswick Road. You can see that here it looks like it will be a one-side cutting (a "bench" when on hillsides):[img]http://i164.photobucket.com/albums/u23/duttonbay/RP/20140108-125214_zps3f791968.jpg[/img]
My afternoon expedition found that the old formation between the platforms was being filled. The platform faces look like remaining in place for "time team" to discover in a hundred years time, but will obviously be covered over by a carpark and bus stops:[img]http://i164.photobucket.com/albums/u23/duttonbay/RP/20140108-155208_zpsa4e24ba1.jpg[/img]
Between Mitcham and Rooks Roads the old line has disappeared completely, and the new line is in a deepish cutting. Hardly surprising, since this area was the summit of the old line. Looking towards Mitcham:[img]http://i164.photobucket.com/albums/u23/duttonbay/RP/20140108-160601_zps8115390b.jpg[/img]
and looking towards Rooks Road:[img]http://i164.photobucket.com/albums/u23/duttonbay/RP/20140108-160624_zpsf6b87428.jpg[/img]
While I was standing at the fence pondering how to take a photo the ute visible above (a chain-link fencing contractor) drove through the gate and came to a shuddering stop when the driver noticed the drop down to where the formation was. With his ute in my field of view I "snuck" in through the gate and stood beside it to take those photos.
At Rooks Road it is very difficult to get anywhere near the action. The closest you can get is to the front door of the business adjacent to the crossing, where I watched a concrete pump preparing to pour a load. You can see the both sides of the crossing have formwork in place either waiting for a pour, or waiting for concrete to cure. As I walked back to my car I noticed another three similar trucks waiting to be called into action:[img]http://i164.photobucket.com/albums/u23/duttonbay/RP/20140108-161457_zpsfe3d7e77.jpg[/img]
The end of the existing line at the Nunawading end, with the overhead tied off:[img]http://i164.photobucket.com/albums/u23/duttonbay/RP/20140108-162737_zps46115097.jpg[/img]
A new up signal being installed, while obviously the down is remaining:[img]http://i164.photobucket.com/albums/u23/duttonbay/RP/20140108-162826_zps7306fb16.jpg[/img]
Finally, the south side of Rooks Road. It will be interesting to see the level of the road here when the bridge is installed - it looks to me as though there might be a slight hump of sorts:[img]http://i164.photobucket.com/albums/u23/duttonbay/RP/20140108-163412_zps83f90eb2.jpg[/img]