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Father Bob Station? Birrarung station?
Ideas for Melbourne's five new train stations are flowing after the government announced a public vote to name the $11 billion Metro Rail project's new underground stops.
Readers of The Age on Sunday suggested Victorian Nobel Prize Laureates, geographical locations, Aboriginal culture and community identities.
While most ideas stayed on the right side of sensible, a few wags couldn't resist.
One reader proposed the hipster themed "Smashed Avo" Station, while the inevitable 'Station McStationface' was an early suggestion, in honour of a public vote in Britain that saw a polar research vessel dubbed Boaty McBoatface.
Larrikins hoping for the latter though will be disappointed.
Premier Daniel Andrews said on Sunday an advisory panel would assess suggestions and submit a shortlist of names for the government to consider.
The Premier described the station-naming competition as a once-in-a-generation chance to "make a mark" on Melbourne.
"We want as many Victorians as possible to have their say on what they'd like the five new underground stations to be named," he said.
Premier Daniel Andrews said he wanted Victorians to "have their say" on the new stations. Photo: Justin McManusThe stations will be built at Arden, Parkville, Domain and under Swanston Street in the CBD.
Winners of the public competition will get what the government is billing as "an exclusive behind the scenes tour of the Metro Tunnel work sites and its massive tunnel-boring machines, as well as an exclusive sneak peak of 'their' station just before it opens to the public".
One of those machines – a mini tunnel-boring machine – was unveiled by the Premier and Transport Minister Jacinta Allan on Sunday.
The mini-borer will start digging a 190-metre-long tunnel under St Kilda Road from Albert Road to Domain Road in South Yarra this week to relocate a 120-year-old section of sewer and make way for the new underground station at Domain.
The machine will be remote controlled from a site office at Albert Road.
Ms Allan said the Japanese-made borer was five metres long, weighed 25 tonnes and cost $2.5 million.
"The big [tunnel-boring machines] to come next year will weigh up to 1000 tonnes and be 100 metres long," she said.
The government said the mini borer will finish its work in less than two weeks and described it as "a glimpse of what's to come", with major tunnelling works to begin under the city centre next year.
The Metro Rail project is designed to ease pressure on the City Loop, but its construction is expected to disrupt the city for the next decade.
In the process it will create more than 5000 jobs while building the rail tunnel as well as the five underground stations.
Victorians have until October 22 to submit their station name suggestions at metrotunnel.vic.gov.au.
Boaty McBoatface was born when the Natural Environment Research Council, a British government agency, opened a public campaign to name a ship.
The plan backfired in spectacular fashion, with voters overwhelmingly supporting a name that failed to capture the grandeur that officials were probably looking for.
To the dismay of many, the Science Ministry ignored the results of the poll and announced that the ship would be named after naturalist David Attenborough.
In an attempt to soothe hurt feelings, British officials acknowledged the Boaty McBoatface phenomenon by bestowing the name on a remotely operated submarine that would accompany the David Attenborough in collecting data and samples.
Meanwhile, a Swedish rail operator has vowed to name one of its trains Trainy McTrainface after a public vote, saying it would bring joy to people disappointed Boaty was rejected.
This article first appeared on www.theage.com.au
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