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A piece of history installed at new Reservoir Station

14 Jul 2020

Next time you visit the brand new Reservoir Station, you may notice an interesting relic that doesn’t quite match the modern façade of the station precinct.

The item is a wooden culvert from the original Whittlesea Railway which was built in 1888-89. This 130-year-old artefact was excavated from the level crossing removal site in 2019 and preserved for its historical significance.

The purpose of the culverts was to manage the flow of water beneath the track and help ensure the safe passage of trains along the railway line. This culvert was one of approximately 90.

In 1929, the Whittlesea Railway Line was electrified and then duplicated in 1959. When the duplication occurred, the wooden culvert was retained, and a concrete pipe was fed into the east end of the culvert.

During the archaeological excavation of the culvert, it was found to have been filled with porous ballast aggregate, which may have been done to act as a filter for water passing through the culvert, and is likely to also have helped to preserve it, which after more than 100 years of operation might otherwise have been compromised.

It’s an amazing addition to our new landscaped civic plaza which beautifully mixes the old and the new of Reservoir.

The culvert installed at the new Reservoir Station.

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