The Victorian Government has awarded a $631 million contract to Laing O’Rourke, Jacobs and Metro Trains Melbourne to remove two dangerous levels crossings in Melbourne’s east, in partnership with the Level Crossing Removal Project.
The contract will see the removal of level crossings at Union Road in Surrey Hills and Mont Albert Road in Mont Albert, replacing them with a rail trench and consolidating Surrey Hills Station and Mont Albert Station into a single premium station.
The premium station and precinct, designs for which were finalised following extensive community consultation, will include a widened pedestrian bridge that will form a small plaza connecting Beresford Street and the Hamilton Street shopping village. This will create more open space and a home for the existing Mont Albert station building, which will be retained for community use close to its current location.
The project will also include the construction of a new entrance at Montrose Street, providing better local access to the station and new open space with landscaping, as well as improved ramps with increased accessibility and fewer stairs.
Victoria’s Minister for Transport infrastructure Jacinta Allan said the project was fast-tracked to minimise the risk from the dangerous level crossings.
“Awarding a contract takes us one step closer to making these death traps a thing of the past and we’re thrilled this project has been fast-tracked, creating hundreds of jobs and supporting local businesses along the way,” she noted.
Keeping the existing heritage-listed Mont Albert station building was one of the suggestions that came out of the community feedback, where more than 5000 pieces of feedback was received and taken into account during the planning and design process.
“Many Mont Albert residents have been calling for a plaza at the top end of Hamilton Street to provide a home for the existing, heritage-listed Mont Albert station building and new community open space – and I’m pleased the design to remove these crossings also delivers that,” Member for Box Hill Paul Hamer said.
Early works will start this month, including upgrading water infrastructure, moving underground services and setting up site offices, with crews on the ground in the coming days. Major construction will start next year.
The new premium station will open in 2023, two years ahead of schedule.