The first of the new elevated stations on the Caulfield-Dandenong corridor has opened to passengers with the Premier, Public Transport Minister and local members on hand to officially re-open Noble Park station.
A new era dawned at #NoblePark this morning! Thanks for your patience during these @levelcrossings works.— Metro Trains (@metrotrains) February 15, 2018
There will be some access changes in and around the forecourt and station precinct at #NoblePark as works continue. Details: https://t.co/78RkXTctmt. pic.twitter.com/l706NXtalk
The opening of the new section of elevated track and station is the start of multiple level crossing removal completions slated to come to a close by the end of the year in the Pakenham/Cranbourne line rail corridor. It's likely (albeit unconfirmed) that Clayton will be the next section to open given the large amount of work still to be completed in the Caulfield-Oakleigh section.
When the elevated sections of track have been completed it will mean there will be no level crossings between the city and Dandenong and when the South Gippsland Highway, Hallam South Road and Clyde Road get underway, there will only be 8 level crossings remaining on the Pakenham branch and 2 remaining on the Cranbourne branch.
The 9 remaining Pakenham branch level crossings are Webster Street in Dandenong, Progress Street in Eumemmering, Webb Street in Narre Warren, Station Street in Beaconsfield, Brunt Road and Station Street in Officer, Cardinia Road in Lakeside as well as McGregor Road and Main Street in Pakenham.
The final 2 Cranbourne branch level crossings are Greens Road in Dandenong South and Camms Road in Cranbourne - Evans Road near Merinda Park is technically a level crossing but the road is blocked at the Cranbourne railway line.
Abbots Road and Thompson Road level crossings on the Cranbourne branch are currently being removed.
More sky rail pic.twitter.com/VO3iFJQJVA— Robert Dow (@Robert_Dow) February 14, 2018
The re-opening of Noble Park comes on the same day that almost two decades worth of punctuality and service cancellation data was released by Public Transport Victoria.
Interestingly, the Frankston line has seen the most cancellations and if you've watched the tweeted video above, there's some enthusiastic support for 'skyrailing' Frankston from at least one passenger who was recorded in the background.
The data dump is an interesting development, as The Age reports, it's Spring Street fulfilling a promise when the new operator contracts were signed.
Having the data is wonderful, but what hasn't happened, yet at least? A release of a full-scale long-term Public Transport network development plan which is designed to improve the infrastructure which impacts cancellations and punctuality but also provides a clear vision on where new infrastructure will be built over the coming decades.