26 October 2022
Anderson Street level crossing closure to cars
The Victorian Government is closing the level crossing at Anderson Street in Yarraville and building a new pedestrian underpass by 2030. Based on safety advice, we're closing one of Melbourne's most dangerous and congested level crossings to keep the area moving when the Werribee line gets busier and to help prevent any further tragic fatalities.
Anderson Street level crossing sits on a narrow street within the Yarraville Village shopping precinct.
With the level crossing closed to vehicles, we’ll create an architecturally designed underpass that is safe and accessible for the whole community.
We’ll work closely with the community and local traders to deliver the best urban design outcome for the Yarraville Village.
With the boom gates currently down for up to an hour of the morning peak, crossing the rail line is a daily frustration for cars and pedestrians, as well as for students walking or cycling to school.
This level crossing has been the site of a tragic fatality and 4 serious injuries since 2006, plus at least 16 near misses since 2016.
With the Metro Tunnel delivering more local train services and Geelong Fast Rail also using the Werribee Line for express services, the Anderson Street level crossing could be closed for up to 85% of the 7am to 9am morning peak.
Closing this level crossing will enhance the vibrant Yarraville Village and avoid traffic gridlock in the future. It will also make the shopping precinct safer for pedestrians and cyclists to get around.
Improved safety – closing the crossing will make it safer and easier for pedestrians to get around.
Better bike paths – bikes will be able to access the underpass meaning improved access to and from the Yarraville Village.
Unlocking opportunities – with the traffic congestion removed from the shopping precinct, there is an exciting opportunity to shape the future of Anderson Street including landscaping, play and art spaces.
Why this level crossing needs to be closed
- About 2500 vehicles travel through this crossing each day
- Boom gates are down for up to 56 minutes of the morning peak (7am to 9am)
- Up to 48 trains during the morning peak (7am to 9am)
- One fatality and 4 serious injuries since 2006, 16 near misses since 2016
Understanding the best design
Each level crossing is different and needs a design that considers environmental, community, heritage and technical factors.
Due to a unique set of design challenges closing the Anderson Street level crossing to vehicles is the best design for the area.
This will make the area safer for pedestrians and cyclists, as well as ease traffic in Yarraville Village.
We'll work closely with local traders and the community to further understand the precinct. This includes local access for customers and delivery drivers, carparking, site conditions and heritage.
This will include working out ways to deliver the best precinct outcomes, which could involve:
- more space for alfresco dining
- an enhanced station and trader precinct
- updated streetscapes with more trees and vegetation
- opportunities for integrated artwork.
Developing the best design
Designs for all level crossing removals are assessed and developed by teams of technical experts including engineers and construction specialists.
We are in the early stages of project design and more work needs to be done before any detailed designs can be developed. This will include ongoing consultation with the local community and traders and use of best practice urban design.
Designs that have been ruled out
We have looked at a number of different ways that this level crossing could be removed, however none of these options are feasible at this location.
A rail bridge or rail trench would:
- impact the existing road underpass at Francis Street and the road bridge on Somerville Road
- impact Yarraville's heritage buildings
- cause significant disruption to Yarraville's passengers using the busy Werribee and Williamstown lines.
A road bridge or road underpass would:
- significantly impact access to homes and businesses on Anderson Street
- cut off connections to local side streets
- could require significant acquisition of local homes and businesses.
Accessing Yarraville Village
People visiting the Village by car from the west will be able to use nearby Somerville Road and Francis Street to cross the rail line.
Alternatively, people can park and walk into the Village using the new pedestrian underpass.
Walking and cycling
Walking and cycling paths will be substantially improved with no more long waits at the boom gates.
We'll build a new pedestrian underpass to help people and cyclists cross the rail line and get to where they need to go safely.
Potential precinct enhancement that could occur once the level crossing is closed to cars. Precinct plans will be developed in consultation with local traders and the community. Artist impression only.