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Paula Power's picture
#77

I am puzzled as to how running trains overhead will create a barrier between communities,surely by removing the tracks from the ground will do the exact opposite

Attract crime and graffiti? That sounds to me like taking how things were done in the 60`s and 70`s an assume the same result

Reduce property values? Has anyone got any evidence for this?

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Peter Maltezos's picture
#78

http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/level-crossings-sky-rail-avoided-delay...

Level crossings: sky rail avoided delays and power shut downs, documents suggest

March 12, 2016 - 12:03PM Farrah Tomazin

Melbourne Level Crossings - projects / discussion

Premier Daniel Andrews' plan to remove level crossings in Melbourne's southeast could have been delayed by at least two years and countless homes could have lost their power supplies if the government had not opted to build elevated rail.

As the political stoush over sky rail continues, documents seen by The Sunday Age suggest the open trench solution that many residents have called for would have required the relocation of a major gas transmission main that runs directly across parts of the Cranbourne-Pakenham rail corridor.

Relocating the gas main, which is about 750 millimetres in diameter, could have delayed the completion of level crossing removals until at least 2020 – two years after the next state election.

It is understood that many homes and businesses nearby would have also been severely disrupted over that period, with shut downs of water, electricity and gas supplies.

The information is contained in a survey of two local utility companies – APA GasNet and Multinet​ – which was conducted by the Level Crossing Removal Authority as it worked out how to deliver the government's multi-billion-dollar infrastructure policy.

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Melbman's picture
#79

Just built it. Its the best solution available for that corridor.

The biggest issue I can see though is the kick it down the street mentality being employed in terms of the additional 2 tracks that will be required. One would expect that better provisions could be catered to in this plan to ensure that when they are needed the main infrastructure is there and nothing in this current phase will have to be demolished to make it happen.

Overall though, its a good plan but one that was always bound to bring out opposition.

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theboynoodle's picture
#80

I am puzzled as to how running trains overhead will create a barrier between communities,surely by removing the tracks from the ground will do the exact opposite

Yes, this seems quite bizarre to me. The effect will depend on how the space is used and what development happens around it.. but, at the very worst, I don't see how the communities could end up any more divided than they are now.

Attract crime and graffiti? That sounds to me like taking how things were done in the 60`s and 70`s an assume the same result

I expect graffiti will be a thing, just like there would be graffiti along the sides of a cut.. but let's not be naive and assume it will be a pristine utopia like the renders. The crime thing is nonsense. It may well be that the scheme creates new spaces where crime-y types will hang out, but even if that's the case it will only be displacing them from hanging out in other places nearby. It won't create crime that wasn't there before.

Reduce property values? Has anyone got any evidence for this?

If the government was smart it would offer to buy every single affected property for market value the day before this was announced... or, perhaps, offer to compensate the owners for any decline in value that they realize (with the counter, obviously, that the government gets any upside). It's what I'd do if I had the cash. These people are getting improved public transport infrastructure, improved roads, and the likelihood of the sites closest to the rail being viable for higher density redevelopment. That's all good for property values.

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Alastair Taylor's picture
#81

Reduce property values? Has anyone got any evidence for this?

It's a question I've also been asking Paula. For instance, when Matthew Guy a-ok'd the new residential zones in Glen Eira, how much did land/property prices go up in areas that got the (scant smattering of!) residential growth zone around Carnegie and to a lesser degree the general residential zone?

the comments about property prices by "real estate agents" are tabloid fodder and probably don't take into account the aforementioned zone changes.

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theboynoodle's picture
#82

I think it's just a standard thing to throw out in objection to anything that one is opposed to.

See the debate about negative gearing where politicians of varying opinions seem to be telling me that keeping it, abolishing it, and amending are all, in some way, bad for property values. Or good for them, if you're proposing.

(And, of course, all of this ignores the massive f'ing elephant in the room who's gently trying to point out that as property prices are a significant component of our cost of living, and we generally like our costs of living to go down, anything that actually does reduce property values should be seen as a net win for society.)

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drunkill's picture
#83

Saw some surveyors from the LXRA at Hughesdale this afternoon when I went past. They were also inspecting some telephone/services pits on either side of the tracks, figuring out how to relocate them I suppose.

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Peter Maltezos's picture
#84

http://www.premier.vic.gov.au/easter-blitz-on-three-of-victorias-worst-l...

Easter Blitz On Three Of Victoria’s Worst Level Crossings

26 March 2016

The Andrews Labor Government is taking advantage of the Easter long weekend to get on with removing three dangerous and congested level crossings on the Frankston Line.

Minister for Small Business, Innovation and Trade Philip Dalidakis joined Member for Bentleigh Nick Staikos to inspect works in Bentleigh today where construction crews are working around the clock to lay a bridge deck on Centre Road, which will enable traffic to flow while the lowered train line is dug underneath.

The level crossings at Centre, McKinnon and North Road in Melbourne’s South East are among the state’s worst. The boom gates are down for up to 45 minutes in the two-hour morning peak, causing frustration, distress and delay for tens of thousands of motorists.

The works occurring over Easter will allow these crossings to be removed quicker, improving safety and reducing congestion sooner.

To enable this work to be done safely and efficiently, buses will replace trains on sections of the Frankston line from Friday 25 March until last service on Sunday 3 April.

McKinnon and Centre roads will also be closed from late on Thursday 24 March, to 5am on Tuesday 5 April.

At the same time, Ormond and McKinnon Stations will close for four to five months so they can be demolished and completely rebuilt.  Bentleigh Station will close in early June for rebuilding.

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Michael Berquez's picture
#85

Drove over the old Burke Rd crossing the other day....my word, it's so much easier, and looks heaps better.

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Peter Maltezos's picture
#86

http://www.premier.vic.gov.au/contract-signed-nine-crossings-gone-2000-j...

Contract Signed, Nine Crossings Gone, 2000 Jobs Created

22 April 2016

The contract for the removal of every dangerous and congested level crossing between Dandenong and the city is signed, and work will start within weeks.

Minister for Public Transport, Jacinta Allan, joined Treasurer Tim Pallas today to announce an alliance including Lendlease, CPB Contractors, WSP Parsons Brinckerhoff, Aurecon and Metro Trains Melbourne has been formally awarded the contract for the Caulfield to Dandenong Level Crossing Removal Project.

The $1.6 billion project will remove nine dangerous level crossings, build five new stations, upgrade signalling and power and create 11 MCG’s worth of new public open space.

Together with the 65 new High-Capacity Metro Trains the Labor Government has ordered, the project will create space for 11,000 extra passengers to catch the train on Melbourne’s busiest rail line.

The project will improve the reliability of the metropolitan, regional and freight services, meaning trains will arrive on time, more often.

By elevating the existing line, the project will transform rail and rocks into kilometres of new parks, paths and open space that will be overseen by an expert panel headed by CEO of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Tim Entwisle. A Trust fund has also been established, to ensure the new space is safe, green and cared for in the long term.

Video:

http://www.premier.vic.gov.au/youll-want-to-watch-this/

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Peter Maltezos's picture
#87

http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/sky-rail-a-great-day-for-melbourne-201...

Sky rail: a great day for Melbourne

April 22, 2016 - 4:37PM Adam Carey

Opinion

So sky rail is a done deal just two months after we knew it was even an idea, and in two-and-a-half years every level crossing on the Dandenong line will be gone.

What a great day for Melbourne.

Those nine overworked sets of boom gates have jammed up the roads and crush-loaded the trains on the city's busiest rail line for years. 

Until now every plan to remove them has died before it was born, leaving the city's south-east to fester in worsening congestion.

But with contracts signed, the crossings will be gone by late 2018, in the shadow of the next state election.

But more importantly, this is just in time to save the government having to make a terrible choice between putting on more trains and virtually shutting some main roads during peak hour, or letting train overcrowding get so bad some people will be left stranded on platforms.

Progress is hard and sky rail has not been an unambiguous good-news story for the Andrews government. For this it bears much of the blame, having opted not to be up-front with the community about its elevated rail plan until there was no turning back. 

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Peter Maltezos's picture
#88

http://www.premier.vic.gov.au/new-report-confirms-elevated-line-will-red...

New Report Confirms Elevated Line Will Reduce Train Noise

4 May 2016

Melbourne Level Crossings - projects / discussion

The Andrews Labor Government’s solution to remove nine level crossings on the Cranbourne Pakenham line will reduce noise for local residents in Melbourne’s south east.

Minister for Public Transport, Jacinta Allan, today released the Level Crossing Removal Authority’s Preliminary Noise Report for the Cranbourne to Pakenham Level Crossing Removal Project.

The report shows every feature of the new line – stations, track, wheels and horns – will be quieter than the current rail line, with an overall audible decrease in noise from the new project compared to existing conditions.

The addition of noise and privacy screening, as well as directly fixing the track to the structure using continuously welded rail, will have a big impact on reducing noise.

The report also makes clear that the noise modelling used is deliberately conservative, meaning the actual noise affects are likely to be even lower than those indicated.

The release of the report follows the start of works on the $1.6 billion project over the weekend and the Victorian Budget 2016/17 on Wednesday, which provided all the funds necessary to build it.

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Peter Maltezos's picture
#89

http://www.premier.vic.gov.au/massive-winter-construction-blitz-to-remov...

Massive Winter Construction Blitz To Remove Three Dangerous Crossings

5 May 2016

Melbourne Level Crossings - projects / discussion

The dangerous and congested level crossings at North, McKinnon and Centre Roads in Melbourne’s south east will be gone by August, six months ahead of schedule.

Acting Premier James Merlino joined Minister for Public Transport, Jacinta Allan, today to announce a 37-day construction blitz to get rid of these congested death-traps once and for all.

To enable these works to happen safely and efficiently, the Frankston line will be closed between Caulfield and Moorabbin from 24 June until 31 July 2016, and thousands of bus services will replace trains to get passengers where they need to go.

When trains resume, the level crossings will be gone. Three new stations will open progressively in August – six months early.

North, McKinnon and Centre roads will remain open to traffic during this time, aside from some lane closures on North Road, and a weekend closure and some overnight shuts on Centre and McKinnon Roads.

Four other level crossing removals will ramp up in July, at Blackburn Road in Blackburn, Heatherdale Road in Mitcham, and Mountain Highway and Scoresby Road in Bayswater.

These works will close sections of the Belgrave/Lilydale line between 2-10 July, and will prepare the crossings for major construction campaigns at the end of the year.

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Peter Maltezos's picture
#90

http://www.premier.vic.gov.au/twenty-five-level-crossings-to-go-by-the-e...

Twenty Five Level Crossings To Go By The End Of 2019

14 June 2016

The removal of two more level crossings – Grange Road in Alphington and Lower Plenty Rd in Rosanna – will start next year as part of a package of works that includes a new Rosanna Station and duplicated Hurstbridge line.

Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan today announced that the two level crossing removals, second track and new Rosanna Station have been released to market and will be delivered as a single project worth more than half-a-billion dollars.

Grange and Lower Plenty Road level crossings are two of Melbourne’s worst, with boom gates down for more than a third of the morning peak, clogging roads in Melbourne’s north eastern suburbs.

Their fast-tracking means 25 dangerous and congested level crossings will be removed by the end of 2019, including at least 20 by the next election.

This unprecedented construction effort is creating thousands of new jobs and transforming Melbourne’s suburbs.

The Hurstbridge line is one of Melbourne’s most congested. Removing the level crossings and building a second track in Heidelberg will allow more services, reducing crowding and carrying more people every single day.

Duplication of the line will also boost the reliability of services, removing the bottleneck that forces trains heading one way to wait for trains heading the other, and compounding delays and frustration for passengers.

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Peter Maltezos's picture
#91

http://www.premier.vic.gov.au/gone-gone-gone-three-more-level-crossings-...

Gone, Gone, Gone: Three More Level Crossings Removed

26 June 2016

Melbourne Level Crossings - projects / discussion

The dangerous and congested level crossings at Centre, McKinnon and North Roads are gone.

Premier Daniel Andrews joined Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan in Bentleigh today where the Centre Road boom gates that held cars hostage for nearly 40 minutes in the morning peak have been removed.

The boom gates at North Road and McKinnon Road have also been removed, meaning the Frankston line now has three fewer level crossings than it did when the Andrews Labor Government was elected.

The Labor Government has now removed four level crossings in less than 18 months, and construction is underway at a further 15 crossings. By the end of 2018, work will be underway or complete on the removal of 35 of Victoria’s worst crossings – including eight more on the Frankston line –  with 50 crossings gone by 2022.

The removal of the boom gates comes at the start of a 37 day closure of the Frankston line – the most significant rail closure since the construction of the City Loop more than 30 years ago.

During the closure, 1000 construction workers will work around the clock, excavating more than 250,000 cubic metres – enough to fill the MCG –  to lower the train line by up to seven metres and remove the crossings.

To enable this work to be carried out safely and efficiently, buses are replacing trains between Caulfield and Moorabbin, and on the Stony Point line.

Trains will return at the start of August, and the new stations at Ormond, McKinnon and Bentleigh will be progressively opened to passengers over the month.

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Peter Maltezos's picture
#92

http://www.premier.vic.gov.au/level-crossing-removals-creating-thousands...

Level Crossing Removals Creating Thousands Of Jobs

28 June 2016

The Andrews Labor Government’s work to remove 50 dangerous and congested level crossings is reducing congestion and making communities safer – and it has already created thousands of new jobs.

Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan today inspected construction of the new St Albans and Ginifer Stations being built as part of the Main and Furlong Road level crossing removals.

More than 2,000 staff have been involved in the package of works that is removing the deadly and congested level crossings in St Albans, and up to 100 people will be employed to build the new stations.

The stations are being built inside a huge factory on the other side of Melbourne in Kilsyth, using state-of-the-art 3D modelling. When complete, they will be transported across Melbourne in segments and assembled on site.

The ‘digital build’ improves the design and construction of the stations, allowing any issues to be resolved in a controlled environment inside the factory, rather than at the last-minute on site.

Prebuilding the stations inside boosts efficiency by enabling multiple works to occur at the same time, meaning the stations will be installed and open to passengers sooner.  It also improves the quality and safety of the construction process, by removing variables like weather conditions and space-constraints on site.

More than 6,000 workers have been inducted at the 19 level crossings removed or being built, including nearly 3,000 workers on the Burke, Centre, McKinnon and North Road projects where the boom gates are now gone.

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Melb on's picture
#93

Thanks for the updates Peter,it really keeps us in the picture. I must say that this Andrews government is so progressive and vastly different from the past liberal mob.The contracts are all signed and work started before the whingeing selfish turds around the line had time to realize whats happening.They now need to do the same on the Frankston line and elevate it without any arguments.If they dont like it let them sell up and move, at least Melbourne's transport will now improve 100 fold.

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drunkill's picture
#94

Impressive aerial footage: https://www.facebook.com/levelcrossings/videos/1089098904498127/

And you can see why people say trenches divide communities.

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Peter Maltezos's picture
#95

http://www.premier.vic.gov.au/major-works-set-to-start-on-new-elevated-r...

Major Works Set To Start On New Elevated Rail Line

6 July 2016

Melbourne Level Crossings - projects / discussion

The huge gantry cranes that will build sky rail on the Cranbourne-Pakenham line.

Major construction on the Andrews Labor Government’s $1.6 billion project to remove every level crossing between Dandenong and the City is about to begin.

Premier Daniel Andrews today joined Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan to announce that, from the start of August, preparations will begin to install two ‘gantry cranes’ weighing 230 tonnes near Murrumbeena Station ready for an advanced engineering feat never seen before in Victoria.

The huge gantry cranes – 40 metres wide and 150 metres long – will install the 2,500 locally-manufactured segments of the new modern elevated line by moving back and forth in the air while trains keep running underneath.

The advanced technique significantly reduces the impact on passengers and nearby homes during construction.

This new line will remove nine of Victoria’s worst level crossings, reducing road congestion, improving safety and creating space to run more trains in and out of the city.

New power and signalling will be installed and 30 platforms along the Cranbourne-Pakenham line will be extended so they are ready for the 65 new high-capacity trains that will begin using the line when the project is finished in 2018.

There will be impacts on commuter car parking while the five new elevated train stations are built. The car park at Murrumbeena Station will be fully closed and the car park at Noble Park will be partially closed from the start of August until the project is finished in 2018.

Carnegie Station car park will also be fully closed from 7 August, Clayton Station car park will partially close in September and Hughesdale Station will close later in the year also until 2018.

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Peter Maltezos's picture
#96

http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/highrises-to-soar-over-suburban-statio...

High-rises plans for suburban stations to help fund level crossing removals

JULY 25 2016 - 4:40PM Adam Carey

Melbourne Level Crossings - projects / discussion

Construction work at Ormond railway station.  Photo: Wayne Taylor

The state government plans to build a residential tower up to 13 storeys high above the Frankston railway line in Melbourne's south-east to help pay for its level crossing removals, in a strategy it wants to replicate across Melbourne.

The apartment building with street-level retail would be built on North Road above Ormond station, and in a first for Melbourne's mostly low-rise suburbs, will be built directly over the railway tracks. It would be significantly taller than other buildings in Ormond.

The deck on the which the building would stand has just been built during the 37-day shutdown of the Frankston line between Caulfield and Moorabbin to remove three level crossings.

The line is due to reopen in a much transformed state on Monday.

Labor flagged in Opposition that it would develop land as part of some level crossing removals to help pay for other transport upgrades, including extra station car parking and yet more level crossing removals.

Ormond marks the first example by the Andrews government of this "value capture" approach.

At up to 13 storeys high, the development would be much taller than any other building in that part of Melbourne, which is low-rise in character.

 

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Peter Maltezos's picture
#97

http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/trench-or-sky-rail-for-alphington-resi...

Trench or sky rail for Alphington? Residents weigh up Grange Road options

JULY 28 2016 - 6:07PM Adam Carey

Leafy Alphington is the latest Melbourne suburb that could see a new rail bridge soar across a main road and above homes as part of the state government's $5-$6 billion level crossing removal program.

The prospect of living within view of a rail bridge has angered some residents, who fear it will be ugly and intrusive. But the bridge would avoid the need to acquire homes on Grange Road, which is residential and a busy truck route that links with the Chandler Highway.

Residents have been presented with four options for the Grange Road level crossing removal, two of which – a road bridge and a road trench – would require "extensive land acquisition of private properties".

About 120 people have signed a petition demanding the government digs a rail trench rather than elevate the Hurstbridge railway line through a low-rise part of Alphington.

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Peter Maltezos's picture
#98

http://www.premier.vic.gov.au/st-albans-station-in-place-after-journey-a...

St Albans Station In Place After Journey Across Melbourne

29 July 2016

The new St Albans station is on site in Melbourne’s west after being constructed more than 50 kilometres away in Kilsyth.

Acting Public Transport Minister Luke Donnellan visited St Albans today, where the station building has been lowered into place over the past week.

The new St Albans Station – as well as the new Ginifer Station being built as part of the Furlong Road level crossing removal – was built in a factory in Kilsyth using cutting edge 3D modelling.

Prebuilding the stations inside boosts efficiency by enabling multiple works to occur at the same time, meaning the stations will be installed and open to passengers sooner.

It also improves the quality and safety of the construction process, by removing variables like weather conditions and space-constraints on site.

The pre-fabricated station was driven across town early on Monday morning in four giant segments by a  convoy of six trucks and lifted into place by a 200 tonne crane.

The construction team are now completing the final fit outs of the station, and installing lifts, ramps and stairs.

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Peter Maltezos's picture
#99

Two level crossings out, two brand new train stations in

29 July 2016

Check out the video:

http://www.premier.vic.gov.au/two-level-crossings-out-two-brand-new-trai...

Melbourne Level Crossings - projects / discussion

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Peter Maltezos's picture
#100

http://www.premier.vic.gov.au/crossings-gone-tracks-lowered-trains-retur...

Crossings Gone, Tracks Lowered, Trains Returned

31 July 2016

Trains return to the Frankston line tomorrow after three level crossings were removed during the longest rail line closure since construction of the City Loop more than 30 years ago.

Premier Daniel Andrews today joined Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan on the platform of the new below-ground McKinnon Station, which will open to passengers tomorrow.

The new station was built during a construction blitz that has removed three dangerous and congested level crossings in Melbourne’s south east six months ahead of schedule.

Over the past 37 days, more than 1,000 people have worked around the clock excavating 250,000 cubic metres of soil – enough to fill the MCG –  to lower the line so trains can run safely under Centre, McKinnon and North Roads.

These level crossings were some of Melbourne’s worst, with boom gates down for up to 45 minutes in the two-hour morning peak, causing frustration, distress and delay for tens of thousands of motorists.

To enable these works to occur, the Frankston line was closed between Caulfield and Moorabbin for more than five weeks, and replacement buses moved thousands of passengers every day.

McKinnon Station will open tomorrow, and Ormond and Bentleigh Stations will open later in August. Carpark and landscaping works at the three stations will continue over the coming months.

This is the first time in Victoria’s history that three level crossings have been removed concurrently and means the Andrews Labor Government has now removed four level crossings in less than 18 months.

Construction has started at a further 15 crossing removals, and by the end of 2018 work will be underway or complete on the removal of 35 of Victoria’s worst crossings, with 50 level crossings to be removed by 2022.

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Peter Maltezos's picture
#101

http://www.theage.com.au/victoria/frankston-line-reopens-as-level-crossi...

Frankston line reopens as level crossing program rolls on

AUGUST 1 2016 - 5:03PM Broede Carmody

Melbourne Level Crossings - projects / discussion

McKinnon Station reopened Monday after getting a makeover. Photo: Josh Robenstone

It'll soon be on the buses for thousands of Melbourne train commuters as more level crossings are removed across the city.

Bayside residents were rejoicing on Monday as the Frankston line reopened following 37 consecutive days of level crossing removal works.

Commuters had endured lengthy delays as they were forced onto buses while level crossings were removed and a brand new underground station built.

Now, the Level Crossing Removal Authority will focus its efforts on the Sunbury, Lilydale and Belgrave lines.

The level crossing will be removed from Main and Furlong roads on the Sunbury line, while two crossings will be removed on the Lilydale line, one on Blackburn Road in Blackburn and the second on Heatherdale Road in Mitcham.

Nearby, the Belgrave line will also get a makeover with the removal of the Mountain Highway and Scoresby Road level crossings in Bayswater.

That will be followed by the massive task of getting rid of nine level crossings on the Cranbourne line, focused on the suburbs of Carnegie, Clayton and Noble Park.

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