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Dozens of extra level crossings should be added to the state’s grade separation program to create more jobs and boost safety, the state opposition says.
The level crossing removals nominated by the Victorian coalition, and which are spread across the network from Frankston in Melbourne’s south to Sunbury in the northwest, would take the total number being planned or that have been completed to 100.
Opposition transport infrastructure spokesman David Davis said some of the intersections would be a “triple bunger” job with road, tram and train networks separated.
He said the projects had been selected after consultation with a range of stakeholders including rail groups, councils and the transport coalitions.
“These overlooked level crossing removals projects would help provide the massive boost to construction activity and jobs the Federal Government has called upon the states to unlock,” he said.
Workers remove a level crossing from Bayswater Road at Bayswater Station. Picture: The Australian.“This urgent spending will support construction jobs and help lift Victoria out of its deep economic fall, driven by the hard and prolonged COVID-19 lockdown.”
Some of the level crossings on the opposition’s list include at Warrigal Road in Parkdale, Macaulay Road in Kensington, and Glen Eira Rd in Ripponlea.
It also calls for three projects along the Glen Waverley line that have some federal funding attached to be included.
Mr Davis said the cost of each project ranged, and some could be done as a cluster of works, and if money was secured in the budget then work could begin within three or four years to keep a pipeline going.
The level crossing at St Albans was listed as one of the state’s most dangerous.He said the “pie in the sky” Suburban Rail Loop promised by Labor — the first stage of which would tunnel from Southland in Cheltenham to Box Hill in Melbourne’s east — would not be finished for decades and should not be prioritised ahead of quicker stimulus projects.
“Funding to rapidly commence these level crossing removals must be provided in the State Budget on 24 November. Anything less means Daniel Andrews simply is not serious about Victoria recovering as quickly as possible from the recession that began in Victoria before the COVID-19 pandemic.”
The state’s level crossing removal program is one of the Andrews Government’s signature policies, with Premier Daniel Andrews pledging 75 will be completed by 2025.
So far, 43 have been removed, with a number fast-tracked during the pandemic.
LEVEL CROSSINGS TO REMOVE
— Warrigal Road, Parkdale
— Highett Road, Highett
— Wickham Road, Highett
— Dublin Road, Ringwood East
— Coolstore Road, Croydon
Glen Waverley line:
— Madden Grove, Burnley
— Glenferrie Road, Kooyong
— Tooronga Road, Malvern
— High Street, Glen Iris
— Marshall Street, Ivanhoe
— Main Hurstbridge Road, Diamond Creek.
— Riversdale Road, Camberwell
— Prospect Hill Road, Camberwell
— Alpine Street, Ferntree Gully
— Railway Ave, Ferntree Gully
Baxter/Stony Point line:
— Moorooduc Highway level crossing to prepare for Baxter electrification.
— Macaulay Road, Kensington
— Puckle Street, Moonee Ponds
— Park Street, Moonee Ponds
— Calder Park Drive, Calder Park
— Barry Road, Campbellfield
— Officer South Road, Officer
— Glen Eira Road, Ripponlea
— South Road, Brighton
South Morang line:
— Keon Parade, Reservoir
This article first appeared on www.heraldsun.com.au
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