Cherry Street, Werribee community update – November 2019
11 Nov 2019
Works ready to begin at Cherry Street
As part of the Victorian Government’s commitment to remove 75 dangerous and congested level crossings, we’re removing the level crossing at Cherry Street in Werribee.
Removing the level crossing will reduce congestion and create a safer shopping precinct for the Werribee community, and construction will start soon.
Currently, around 20,000 vehicles cross over the Cherry Street level crossing each day and boom gates are down for an average 35 minutes of the two-hour morning peak.
We will remove the level crossing by building a road bridge over the rail line, extending Tarneit Road to Princes Highway via the irrigation channel next to Wyndham City Council offices.
People travelling to and from Princes Freeway will have a faster journey using this new direct link.
At Cherry Street, we will build a wide, well-lit underpass for pedestrians and cyclists to safely cross the rail line and gain easy access to the Watton Street shopping precinct, before closing the existing crossing to road traffic.
Works will start in early 2020 and the level crossing will be removed in 2022.
To find out more visit the Cherry Street, Werribee project page.
What we heard from the community
We heard feedback at two community drop-in sessions and through surveys.
- More than 300 people attended drop-in sessions
- 474 completed surveys
- More than 2600 visits to our online hub
What you told us
In your feedback you told us the look of the finished project was most important to the community. You also want to see less traffic congestion, more pedestrian and cycling paths, and better connections to Watton Street and Werribee’s city centre. Some of the most important elements you asked us to consider include:
- trees, plants and planter boxes
- lighting features
- more car parks
- safe walking and cycling paths
- less traffic congestion.
How we’ve improved the design
We have listened to the community and made changes to the design that will make the area safer and easier to get around.
We heard that you would prefer a signalised intersection, so the existing roundabout linking Tarneit Road to the new road bridge will be changed to a signalised intersection.
A new shared-use path along the rail line will connect Princes Highway and the Tarneit Road intersection back to the pedestrian underpass, increasing pedestrian and cyclist connections in the area. There will also be a pedestrian path included on the new road bridge.
The new road bridge and pedestrian underpass will be built with neutral colours to ensure the structure is in keeping with the look and feel of the area.
We also heard you would like to see more trees and plants in the area, so we will add vegetation to the plazas either side of the underpass.
We will use either exotic or native plants species that are drought tolerant and consistent with local landscaping.
Help us refine the community spaces
We are now asking the community to help us choose urban design elements for the pedestrian and cyclist underpass. This includes paint colours on key surfaces and a choice of plant species used in the landscaping.
Get involved by filling in the survey at Your Level Crossing.
What to expect in the area
There are rules and guidelines that govern how we undertake our work and we’ll be available around the clock if you have any questions.
It’s expected there will be some noise and vibration, as will all projects of this scale. Our teams work hard to keep the disruption to a minimum.
We will need to remove some trees and vegetation around the rail corridor to safely build the new road bridge and pedestrian and cyclist underpass.
Prior to removal, trees are inspected, and qualified wildlife handlers are on call to safely move wildlife as needed.
We will protect vegetation in the area where possible, and will be replanting and landscaping in the new open spaces either side of the pedestrian and cyclist underpass.
Starting in early 2020, the team will set up a site compound on the Princes Highway side of the rail lines. This will include site offices, staff car parking and space to store materials.
Once we’re set up, we will relocate local services such as electricity and water. At this time, we will also start works to move the existing irrigation channel into underground pipes. This will make way for the new bridge.
From there, we will work to build the bridge approaches and the retaining walls that will form the new bridge ramps. When these are in place, concrete beams will be lifted over the rail lines to form the top of the bridge. To safely complete this work, short temporary rail shutdowns will be required.
During this time, we will also start to build the pedestrian and cyclist underpass. When the new structure is built, we will start landscaping and architectural details such as garden beds, tree planting, and seating will be added.
The Cherry Street level crossing will be the first in the area we will start construction on, with level crossings at Old Geelong Road in Hoppers Crossing and Werribee Street in Werribee soon to follow. All three will be removed by the end of 2022.
For more information on the construction timelines, visit the Cherry Street Your Level Crossing page.
Bird’s-eye view of the new road bridge. Concept design only, subject to change.
Why a road bridge?
We looked at a range of options to benefit the local community and transport network through the design and development phases. A road over rail design at Tarneit Road allows for:
- Minimal disruption – this design will minimise disruption to the road and rail networks during construction, with the Cherry Street level crossing remaining open until the new road bridge is built.
- Transport connections – the new road bridge will provide direct access to the Princes Highway. Instead of driving through Cherry Street, cars will travel along Railway Avenue or Tarneit Road to the new road bridge, which provides direct access to Princes Highway and eliminates wait time at the boom gates.
- Traffic flow - the new road bridge will improve traffic flow by keeping through traffic to major roads, with the additional benefit of creating a safer city centre for the community to enjoy.
Other projects in your area
Planning is progressing for two other crossings in the area, at Old Geelong Road in Hoppers Crossing and Werribee Street in Werribee.
The preferred design to remove the level crossing at Old Geelong Road is to construct a new road bridge over the rail line at an alternative location east of the current crossing.
At the Werribee Street level crossing, the preferred design is a rail over road design that would remove the boom gates and open up space below.
The project team is continuing assessments and drawing on recent community consultation to finalise designs. We will be back out in the community to discuss these projects soon.
Works on both Werribee Street and Old Geelong Road are expected to start next year.
We will try to minimise temporary rail shutdowns and disruptions by planning works across several sites at the same time.
All three crossings will be removed in 2022.
New bridge from Railway Avenue Concept design only, subject to change.
Getting around Werribee
Currently, your journey through Cherry Street is often disrupted with boom gates down for an average 35 minutes of the two-hour morning peak.. When the level crossing is gone, cars, pedestrians and cyclists will have a more consistent journey.
Removing the Cherry Street level crossing will mean a safer, more reliable journey with no more queuing at the boom gates.
If you’re travelling from the north of the rail line to Princes Highway, then instead of driving through Cherry Street, you’ll travel along Railway Avenue or Tarneit Road to the new road bridge, which provides direct access to Princes Highway.
If you’re travelling from the north of the rail line to the Watton Street shopping precinct, then you will need to travel over the new bridge and use Princes Highway to access Cherry Street. This trip will be more reliable and consistent without the risk of being caught at the boom gates.
By taking through-traffic out of the Werribee City Centre, the new bridge will make it easier for locals to access the Watton Street shopping precinct.
Walking and cycling
As part of the level crossing removal works, we will construct a wide and inviting, well-lit underpass for pedestrians and cyclists to safely cross the rail line and gain easy access to the Watton Street shopping precinct.
A new shared pedestrian and cyclist path will run along the rail line between the new underpass at Cherry Street and Princes Highway at the Wattle Avenue intersection. There will also be a new footpath on the road bridge, providing an additional point for pedestrians to cross the rail line.
Maintaining pedestrian access at Cherry Street
New pedestrian and cyclist-friendly underpass Concept design only, subject to change.
When the Cherry Street level crossing is removed, a new pedestrian and cyclist underpass will be built in its place.
The wide and well-lit underpass will be about 25 metres long, seven metres wide and three metres tall.
Natural daylight will filter into the underpass from the open space between the train tracks overhead. The area will be well-lit at night as well.
We will use high-quality materials and natural colours to ensure the look and feel is in keeping with the area. Pedestrians and cyclists will have easy access the Cherry Street shopping precinct through the underpass.
Why an underpass?
At Cherry Street, a new pedestrian underpass is the best way to make it easier for pedestrians and cyclists to move around the area.
Community feedback suggested the design should improve connections and keep with the look and feel of the local area. We have listened to the community and will add new open spaces either side of the underpass that will be consistent with local landscaping.
Community drop-in sessions
If you would like to view the final project design and find out more about the upcoming works, come along to one of our community drop-in sessions. These events provide a great opportunity to give feedback on the look and feel of the final design, pedestrian and cycling access and community spaces as the project progresses.
We would like to hear your feedback on design elements including the colours used to paint the underpass and the types of plants and landscaping in the plazas either side of the underpass.
Saturday 16 November 10am to 12pm
Tuesday 19 November 5pm to 7pm
The Park Werribee, side entrance.
Drop in anytime, no need to RSVP.
Can’t make it?
You can view the designs and join the conversation on our engagement hub Your Level Crossing.
|November 2018||Early technical investigations and community engagement|
|July 2019||Present designs and community engagement|
|November 2019||Final design confirmed|
|Early 2020||Construction begins|
|End of 2022||Level crossing removed|
Timeline subject to change.