Rosanna station and the Hurstbridge line re-open

Rosanna station and the Hurstbridge line re-open
Rosanna station and the Hurstbridge line re-open

The re-opening of the Hurstbridge line along with the new Rosanna station marks the end of major civil works which included lifting the railway over Lower Plenty Road, lowering it under Grange Road, duplicating a tunnel between Rosanna and Heidelberg and building a new station.

The Hurstbridge line only had two level crossings on Spring Street's list of 50 and the recent works has removed the second of three single-track bottlenecks on the line. 

The first single track bottleneck, the bridge over the Merri Creek just north of Clifton Hill, was removed in 2008/2009, the final bottleneck is the single track section from Greensborough to the end of the line at Hurstbridge. The State Opposition has already announced as part of the election platform that they would do this as a priority if they were elected in November.

A new timetable which will add peak services to the Hurstbridge line will begin in August and works at Rosanna station will continue, namely landscaping and station fitout works - a common theme with level crossing removal projects to date.  Dandenong corridor stations have been re-opened at the point where services can resume, not necessarily when all work in the station precincts is complete.

Now that foreseeable works on the Hurstbridge line have been completed, focus shifts to other level crossing removal projects.

As works progress on the extension of the South Morang line to Mernda, on the same line, at Reservoir and Bell Street, two-level crossing removal projects have been mooted.

No official engineering solution has been announced but consultations have been underway for more than a year.

Complexity is the word that best describes Reservoir - a maze of intersecting roads plus a major aqueduct easement need to be factored into the design. 

The two options in the area, according to the Level Crossing Removal Authority's (LXRA) website, are rail over road or rail under road.  Comments made in recent days on the community page have been answered that the preferred solution will be announced within months.

Bell Street is effectively in the same boat - no preferred solution has been chosen however the LXRA website does say that all four possibilities were being assessed (road under rail, rail under road, rail over road and road over rail).

Rosanna station and the Hurstbridge line re-open
The new rail underpass at Grange Road in Alphington - image: LXRA

Alastair Taylor

Alastair Taylor

Alastair Taylor is a co-founder of Urban.com.au. Now a freelance writer, Alastair focuses on the intersection of public transport, public policy and related impacts on medium and high-density development.

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