Melbourne Metro CBD station details emerge

More details of the Melbourne Metro project have been drip-fed out of the Victorian Government this week.

Yesterday, the Minister for Public Transport announced the scope of properties which will need to be acquired as part of the Melbourne Metro project: the total quote sits at 44 buildings with 94 individual titles.

An apartment building in the CBD containing 49 apartments will be acquired along with houses located near the tunnel portals in South Kensington and South Yarra. A further 31 titles which have commercial properties on them are set to be acquired.

This morning, Jacinta Allan provided a clearer picture on the construction method for the CBD stations. "The heart of Melbourne will keep moving while the heart of our transport system is transformed below it" the Public Transport Minister said.

It appears that a relatively straightforward construction technique (straightfoward elsewhere in the world, new to us in Melbourne) will be used. Some surface properties will be acquired in order for crews to access the underbelly of the city and then excavate and construct the station infrastructure under the street.

One of the Premier's tweets illustrates the construction method:

377-391 Swanston Street: dead in the water?

Back in May we reported on the history of the 212-222 La Trobe Street site which was at the time being spruiked with a permit by Savills. This site in the video tweeted by the Premier appears that it will only be used during construction.

The video seems to suggest that the surface buildings for the CBD North Station will be on the 377-391 Swanston Street site.

Left: tower approved on 371-391 Swanston Street. Right: Aurora looks set to be CBD North's neighbour

Furthermore, judging by the now public domain video, Scape Melbourne's approved project on the 393 Swanston Street site will not be directly impacted during the construction of the station underbelly nor be taken up by the surface buildings.

The video also depicts the apartment building at 200 La Trobe Street disappearing from the skyline as well.

Next door to 212-222 La Trobe Street, the Aurora Melbourne Central tower's site (224-252 La Trobe Street) is being prepared, with the on-site multi-level car park currently being demolished. See our related forum thread for pictures of the site preparation.

Aurora Melbourne Central's official construction launch was this morning.


Alastair Taylor's picture

There was a question on facebook: "Both sites there have approved and soon under construction apartment towers, how are they going to go about demolishing those in a few years?"

If a project is approved it doesn't automatically mean it's going to go under construction straight-away (nor is it a guarantee the project goes ahead).

Best guess: the Scape 212-222 La Trobe St site will kick off after, or near the end of the construction phase of the station. Ditto for Scape at 393 Swanston Street really.

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Qantas743's picture

Going by the indicative images, surely they can build apartments or offices above the stations themselves?

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Alastair Taylor's picture

Another plus: Melbourne Central station will finally get a non-shopping centre entry back.

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Adrian's picture

F'n LOL at the groundbreaking of Aurora !!!!

As much as I'm thrilled both at having another underground station accessible from my apartment door and the fact those two boxes at 212 LaTrobe that would have butted up against Aurora ruining the spacing of such a big tower is now postponed - ultimately NOT linking these two stations would have been outright stupidity ..

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Alastair Taylor's picture

I wouldn't write off the Scape tower at 212-222 La Trobe just yet - the video shows demolition on that site, but the station's surface buildings appear to not take up that space (only the one on the intersection's corner: 377-391 Swanston Street).

After construction is finished on the station, 212-222 La Trobe might go up after (effectively the Melb Metro Rail Authority would have done the site prep for it as part of the station works).

Would be nice to see the actual designs/plans however.


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Adam Ford's picture

I don't know, guys. That doesn't look like a building to me.
That looks like a flash way of saying "this is where the hoardings are going to be around our bloody great pit".
Why would you need to construct a four storey building that size to cater for two new rail platforms? The ticketing and everything's going to be down at the concourse level. Any money this will be sold back as a development site at the end of the exercise.

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Nicholas Harrison's picture

My understanding is that all of the sites will be purchased, the existing buildings demolished, it will then be used as a construction yard/pit and then the site will be sold after construction is completed.

It will be a fantastic opportunity for the complete redevelopment of one of the ugliest, most prominent corners in the city. It will allow for a much better outcome than the individual development of 212 La Trobe and 391 Swanston as they are currently approved.

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Nicholas Harrison's picture

Same story down the other end of Swanston Street where the buildings around Young And Jacksons will be demolished and that will allow for a development that will finally cover up the blank walls of the Nicholas Building and 238 Flinders Street.

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ford wong's picture

Wonder if the present owner can get back the land for development after the tube is constructed.
There is no way you can buy back something like these sites in the area.
If the owner of Port Phillip Arcade find out his land is only forced acquired and use as a construction pit and sell it to higher bidder in future development.

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Adrian's picture

Thank goodness the Y&J corner is set for a makeover as well that is more overdue than the LaTrobe corner.

It's not been made clear but can we presume there will be an underground connection to Flinders St station ? Surely would be traffic suicide to funnel everyone back up to the already overcrowded Flinders & Swanston intersection ..

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