Three more dangerous and congested level crossings in Melbourne’s south-east are set to go – making the Pakenham line completely level crossing free by 2025 – with a total of 22 level crossings being removed on the line.
The level crossings on Main Street, McGregor Road and Racecourse Road in Pakenham will all be gone for good by 2024 – with a new rail bridge built over the roads. Two new stations will also be developed at Pakenham and East Pakenham, along with 6 MCG’s worth of new open space for locals to enjoy.
A contract has now been signed to deliver the project – which will see thousands of motorists who pass through these level crossings everyday benefit from safer journeys and eased congestion.
An alliance comprising John Holland Group, Kellogg Brown and Root (KBR), Metro Trains Melbourne (MTM) and the Level Crossing Removal Project will deliver the $844 million works that will allow more trains to run, more often.
Crews have already commenced early works in the area to pave the way for major construction to begin early next year. The southern car park at Pakenham Station is now closed, with alternative parking available in the northern car park on Railway Avenue.
Buses will replace trains on sections of the Pakenham, Cranbourne and Gippsland lines from 8.30pm, Tuesday 11 January to last service, Sunday 6 February, as these works progress. Some road closures will also be in place.
Throughout next year, crews will begin working on gas, power, water and other utilities in the rail corridor and the arrival of piling rigs – including giant drills – on site. Early ground works on the new Pakenham and East Pakenham stations will start in late 2022, with both new stations to open to passengers in 2024.
Designs for the new Pakenham and East Pakenham stations were recently presented for community consultation. More than 300 local members provided feedback – with gardens, playgrounds and sport and recreational areas among the most popular suggestions to include around the stations, and in the space under the rail bridge.
Work continues in the south east to provide safer and more reliable journeys across the road network. In Pakenham, as part of Major Road Projects Victoria, the Healesville-Koo Wee Rup Road Upgrade will see an extra lane added, improved intersections and safety barriers installed between the Princes Freeway and Manks Road.
Construction is progressing on the Monash Freeway Upgrade, with O’Shea Road being extended to join the Beaconsfield interchange. The interchange will be upgraded by adding an inbound freeway off-ramp and an outbound freeway on-ramp, making access to and from the Monash and Princes freeways safer and more reliable.