Industry Infrastructure, Level Crossing Removal, Rail industry news (Australia, New Zealand), Track Construction, Train Stations, Victoria

Winter works heat up in Melbourne’s outer east

The final push to make the Lilydale Line Melbourne’s first level crossing free rail line has kicked off, with construction blitzes at Dublin Road, Ringwood East and Coolstore Road, Croydon.

After the last train departs Ringwood East Station, crews will begin 24/7 works to finish building the 650m rail trench and new Ringwood East Station, with both the rail line and station set to reopen in early July.

During works to get rid of the dangerous and congested Dublin Road level crossing, up to 200 workers will work day and night to:

  • Remove the boom gates and demolish the old station
  • Lift in the final modular station building
  • Lay 2500 sleepers
  • Deposit 8000 tonnes of ballast
  • Lay 1.9km of rail track
  • Build a 460-space car park

In the past months, crews have been busy with foundation works, digging 561 piles up to 19m deep, excavating 65,000 cubic metres of dirt, and pouring thousands of tonnes of concrete for trench retaining walls and new station concourse.

In Croydon, works will also continue to build the new state of the art transport hub, with crews working around the clock to finish building the rail bridge and new Kent Avenue/Lacey Street intersection, which will streamline traffic and connect retail precincts either side of the rail line.

During the works blitz, crews of up to 250 workers will lay 4050 sleepers and 2.4km of track for the new rail bridge, and 13,000 tonnes of ballast. When finished, the 687m long rail bridge will weigh more than 11,000 tonnes, with each viaduct built to support 626 tonnes – equivalent to the weight of a train filled with passengers.

Crews will also demolish the remaining sections of the old Croydon Station, install the new modular station buildings, and build the 160m long elevated platforms.

After trains resume running in early July, works to finish the new premium Croydon Station will continue until it opens to the community in late July.

Work on the rest of the transport hub, including the 14-bay bus interchange, station car parks, pedestrian and cycling paths, new Devon Street and Wicklow Avenue connection, and landscaping will continue into spring.

During the construction blitz, buses will replace trains on sections of the Lilydale and Belgrave lines from 8.30pm, Friday 24 May until early July.

With the Cave Hill Road level crossing in Lilydale already closed, getting rid of the Dublin Road and Coolstore Road level crossings will mean the Lilydale Line will be boom gate free by mid 2024, a year ahead of schedule.