The Caulfield to Dandenong: Level Crossing Removal Project is removing nine level crossings and rebuilding five stations. The Cranbourne-Pakenham train line is Melbourne's busiest and is crossed by some of our most congested roads, with boom gates down for up to 82 minutes during the morning peak.

Overview

The Caulfield to Dandenong project is working to improve safety and reduce congestion along Melbourne's busiest train line. We are removing nine level crossings at:

We are also building five brand new stations at Carnegie, Murrumbeena, Hughesdale, Clayton and Noble Park.

An Alliance including Lendlease, CPB Contractors, WSP Parsons Brinckerhoff, Aurecon and Metro Trains Melbourne is delivering the project on behalf of LXRA.

This Alliance will also be undertaking critical work to upgrading signalling and power infrastructure along the entire Cranbourne and Pakenham lines, in preparation for the introduction of High Capacity Metro Trains.

Design

We will remove the nine level crossings between Caulfield and Dandenong by elevating three sections of the Cranbourne-Pakenham line.

The elevated structure design is being guided by urban design principles. For more information view the urban design factsheet.

Read more in our 'why rail over' factsheet.

Community feedback has shaped many important changes to original designs for stations and the elevated rail. Find more detail in the Consultation Outcomes and Submissions Report.

Finalised designs released include:

For more information on the design process and finalised designs visit our design page.

Construction

Major construction has commenced to build the three sections of elevated structure that will raise the rail line over nine existing level crossings. We are using different construction methodologies in different sections of the rail corridor depending on the amount of space available for machinery and equipment.

Caulfield to Hughesdale

Because the rail corridor is narrow in this area, special 'gantry' cranes will be used to build the elevated structure. The two gantry cranes will be based at Murrumbeena where they will assemble the segments into bridge spans, and lift them onto the elevated structure. For more information on the gantry cranes, view this factsheet.

From there, an overhead carrier will travel back and forth along the elevated deck to install the new spans. This is an advanced technique that will allow trains to keep running underneath.

Watch a video showing the gantry crane and carrier in action:

Clayton/Noble Park section

A wider rail corridor means traditional bridge construction methods can be used here. Cranes will operate in the rail corridor to lift 'Super T' beams into place.

View a brochure about the construction method.

Strategies

Environment

We are committed to leaving a positive environmental legacy and complying with all regulatory and policy requirements.

Our Environmental Management Strategy PDF, 1.4 MB, sets out localised approaches to managing air water, vegetation and wildlife. It also outlines how noise, vibration and air quality/dust impacts will be managed as part of the project.

Native vegetation and wildlife

Any threatened species will be managed in accordance with the relevant legislation, including the Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act 1988 and Wildlife Act 1975.

Where trees need to be removed, they will be pre-inspected for wildlife and suitably permitted wildlife handlers available to assist as required.

Cultural heritage

To ensure that we comply with the Aboriginal Heritage Act 2006 a Cultural Heritage Management Plan has been developed.  We will manage sites of local heritage significance in accordance with the Planning and Environment Act 1987.

Air quality and noise reports

Two recent studies have indicated positive results for nearby residents for both air and noise quality.

Preliminary Noise Report – predictive modelling shows that the elevated rail design will result in an overall reduction in noise throughout the corridor and surrounding areas. For more information on noise view the understanding rail noise and vibration fact sheet

Air Quality Report – modelling indicates that air quality will be improved for households immediately adjacent to the rail line. The elevated structure will help to diluting and disperse fine particles.

Disruptions

The project requires some closures of roads and rail lines, and we thank you for your patience during these times. Read more here on our planned travel disruptions page or on the individual level crossing pages.

Consultation

Local communities, traders and residents have provided valuable input to the project. Feedback has covered a range of topics including design, public open space, local parking, noise, safety and environment.

During consultation:

  • Over 2,200 people attended consultation sessions
  • 170 local residents met with us one on one
  • 1,573 written submissions were received
  • 2,200 people participated in a phone survey
  • Over 1000 face-to-face interviews were conducted.

June to September 2015 

Thousands of pieces of feedback were given to the project team. This feedback helped to inform the designs put together by bidders during the formal tender process, and is summarised in a consultation report PDF, 3.1 MB (October 2015).

February to March 2016 

Following the release of proposed designs from the successful bidder, community consultation was held on the proposed designs for the Caulfield to Dandenong level crossings project. This process included door knocks and meetings with over 170 individual residents closest to the rail corridor, and meetings with over 80 local businesses.

Feedback received via this consultation is summarised in the Consultation Outcomes and Submissions Report (April 2016).  

In March 2016, a report into Community sentiment towards the Caulfield to Dandenong level crossings removals was released. This report was commissioned by the Level Crossing Removal Authority.

December 2016 to mid-2017

Consultation is now underway to shape the new parkland and open space which will sit under and around the new elevated rail structure. To join the conversation, visit the Open Space Ideas Hub.

We will continue to consult with the community on what the project means and how any potential impacts can be reduced. Feedback received will continue to help to inform decision-making about the project. 

New open space

We will create 22.5 hectares of new public space by raising the rail line – equivalent to 11 MCGs. For more information view the public open space and parklands factsheet.

As part of the final stage of the Caulfield to Dandenong Project we will build new parkland, recreation facilities and pedestrian and cycling paths.

Consultation and planning for the open space is now underway, with community suggestions feeding into the design process. You can contribute an idea or comment via the online Open Space Ideas Hub or call 1800 762 667 to request the latest survey.

We want to hear what you think about some of the ideas the Community Open Space Expert Panel has generated as well as your creative ideas for the new open space.

Join the conversation

Your level crossing

Maintenance

To make sure that the new space stays green and well cared for, a $15 million dollar maintenance trust fund will be established. It's likely that the fund will include works such as graffiti removal, weeding, cleaning and litter collection, the Community Open Space Expert Panel will provide advice and recommendations. We are consulting with key stakeholders to determine the appropriate arrangements for the governance and administration of the fund.

Community Open Space Expert Panel

An independent experts panel of is meeting regularly to oversee plans for the open space and to make sure local knowledge is incorporated into the final designs. The panel is chaired by Professor Tim Entwisle, Chief Executive of Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne and includes community representatives, local council, Bicycle Network Victoria, the Office of the Victorian Architect and Victoria Police representatives.

A call for public nominations was launched on 9 April 2016. Members of the community with a design background or interest in public space and urban design were encouraged to apply. The nominees were considered against a set of selection criteria and members were appointed based on their suitability to provide community input to the development of open public spaces. 

Meetings commenced in June 2016 and it is expected that the panel will continue to meet until 30 April 2017.

Listen to Tim Entwisle talking about the Community Open Space Expert Panel.

View the video and transcript for the Caulfield to Dandenong Community Open Space Expert Panel video

Trees and plants

One of the benefits of elevating the rail line is that it allows for hundreds and thousands of plants and trees to be introduced in the new parkland. As this vegetation establishes, it will create a new urban forest. This will increase biodiversity by providing more habitat for local fauna. The expert panel is providing advice on these plantings.

For more information on trees and vegetation including the removals that have occurred view the trees and vegetation factsheet and retention summary report.

Cycling and walking

17 kilometres of shared paths will be created when we elevate the rail line, a boon for cyclists and walkers. The new path will create a continuous path from Caulfield to the EastLink trail. Read more about benefits for cyclists and pedestrians.

Community

Shop local – support our traders

We are committed to minimising the impacts of construction on traders and working closely with traders to make sure customers have ready access to local shops and businesses at all times.
 
As part of our 'Shop Local' campaign we encourage the community to support local traders, and have a wide range of initiatives and incentives in place to encourage our large workforce to do the same. Read more about the 'Shop local' campaign

Stakeholder liaison group

Stakeholder liaison groups (SLGs) play an important role in making sure individuals and groups affected by the project are kept informed and can offer feedback about construction activities.

Read meeting summaries for each group:

To request a copy of meeting minutes please email contact@levelcrossings.vic.gov.au.

Clayton Avenue of Honour

A new Avenue of Honour memorial will be built to commemorate the legacy of local servicemen and women. We are working with the Clayton Returned Services League (RSL) to design the memorial, along with a new multi-use community space.

Employment and Training – building a skilled rail workforce

In partnership with the Chisholm Institute, we have established a new training centre (New Employment Exchange and Training). NEXT will provide tailored training for apprentices and entry-level workers, helping to build a skilled workforce for the future.

Voluntary purchase scheme

In response to community feedback, a Voluntary Purchase Scheme has been established.

Under the voluntary purchase scheme, the government will offer to purchase residential properties most impacted by the project on a voluntary basis – this means that eligible owners have the option of selling their property to the Level Crossing Removal Authority.

No compulsory land acquisition is required for the Caulfield to Dandenong  Level Crossing Removal Project. Any decision for owners to sell their homes to the Government will be entirely voluntary. 

Learn more about Voluntary Purchase Scheme and guiding principles.

Fencing and landscaping packages

Fencing and landscaping packages are also available to eligible property owners.  Learn more about the fencing and landscaping program.

Project updates

To view the latest project newsletters and community updates visit the Caulfield to Dandenong publications page.