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AN HISTORIC railway line from the 1800s could be revived if Banyule Council’s bid to send a train to Doncaster is supported.
Banyule will gather support from neighbouring Yarra and Manninghamcouncils and lobby State Government to reopen the Fairfield Railway spur — part of the outer circle railway line built in 1890s.
The decision was prompted by the mini-suburb-sized residential development at the former Amcor Paper Mill site — bordered by Chandler Highway and Heidelberg Rd.
The Leader has previously reported the Alpha Partners and Glenvill proposal — which could attract an extra 5000 residents — includes up to 2720 dwellings, 19,300sq m retail space, 12,500sq m office space, 23,000sq m open space, an 80-place early learning centre and 180-place prep to Grade 2 primary school.
Banyule’s Mayor Craig Langdon said it was time to create some long-term vision for the area.
“The proposed development of the Alphington Paper Mill site is a once in a generation opportunity to have a long term vision for public transport within the cities of Banyule, Darebin, Manningham and Yarra,” Cr Langdon said.
He said with commitments already made for a new Chandler Highway bridge and the Grange Rd grade separation it would be appropriate for the State Government to consider reopening the Fairfield Railway spur.
Cr Langdon said the railway line would shoot off from between Alphington and Fairfield stations, create a stop at the former paper mill site and continue the line down the earmarked land down the side of the Eastern Freeway to Westfield Doncaster.
“All that area will have massive development in years to come,” Cr Langdon said.
“With the population expected to grow by seven or eight million by 2050 we have to start looking at vision.
“There’s reasonable demand for Doncaster rail and currently the only way to the city is by bus or driving along the Eastern Freeway.”
This article first appeared on www.heraldsun.com.au
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