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Beams have been put in place over Murrumbeena Road as part of the project to create the elevated 3.2-kilometre rail corridor in Melbourne’s South East.
The level crossing at Murrumbeena Road is one of nine dangerous level crossings between Caulfield and Dandenong that are to be removed in the Victorian government’s $1.2 billion project.
Currently, the boom gates on Murrumbeena Road are closed for up to 75 minutes during the two-hour morning peak, causing a great deal of traffic congestion on the busy road.
The construction of the elevated section of the line and the new elevated station is to eventually eliminate the need for the level crossing on Murrumbeena Road.
The concrete beams, which form the foundation for the elevated line, are picked up from the Murrumbeena assembly area by a massive straddle carrier, which carries them along the line, planting them upon columns.
According to the government, using the carrier eliminates both the need to cancel train services and for the compulsory acquisition of property, as the machine is able to manoeuvre and carry out its tasks along the narrow space.
Closed from mid-June for construction works, the station is expected to open again on 2 October, after wet and windy weather conditions in July reportedly delayed the previous plan of a re-opening in early September.
Complaints over the noisy construction works have reportedly led the Level Crossing Authority to invite local residents to temporarily relocate to alternative accommodation for several weeks.
The Caulfield to Dandenong project is to rebuild four more new stations – at Carnegie, Hughesdale, Clayton and Noble Park.
The removal of the crossings and the elevation of the line will allow new parks and open public spaces to be created. It is expected that crossing removals will be complete by the end of 2018.
This article first appeared on www.railexpress.com.au
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