No new level crossings

 
  wongm GEEWONG

Location: Geelong, Victoria
Over the past few years various posters of various reliability have made posts say in Victoria no new level crossings are allowed to be built. Some say it is a union directive where they will refuse to drive trains over them, others have said it is a government decision.

I have finally found an official cite for the assertion. This is from the document Road/Rail Safety Interface Agreements: Rail safety guideline by Public Transport Safety Victoria, dated May 2009 - linky (PDF, 1.77MB, 91pp.)

4.4 New crossings
Planning scheme amendment 18.01-2 of the State Planning Framework states that “design of transport routes must provide for grade separation at railway crossings except with the approval of the Minister for Transport”. This policy is primarily intended to prevent the construction of new roadway level crossings.

Local councils have reported that there are, however, places where pedestrians frequently cross rail lines which are not registered pedestrian crossings. An example of this would be where there are formed pathways leading up to the rail tracks on both sides of the road, but only one of the pathways has a formed pedestrian crossing. While it is not practicable for road managers or rail infrastructure managers to manage all places where pedestrians may cross rail lines, they should consider instances where significant known safety risks exist (for instance, where train drivers frequently report near misses with pedestrians crossing tracks).

Sponsored advertisement

  tranzitjim Chief Commissioner

Location: Banned
So, I guess that this means.....


....when a new road is to be built, and where the new bit of that road will meet with a railway line

....or the same with a new railway line.



I guess that this does not have any bearing on.....
.....when the line is electrified
.....when new tracks are built along an existing railway line
.....when new lanes or a second carraigeway is built along an existing road.
  Ballast_Plough Chief Commissioner

Location: Lilydale, Vic
To throw in a curly one, how would this affect Tourist Railways?
  wongm GEEWONG

Location: Geelong, Victoria
As for the State Planning Policy Framework which it quotes as the reason for no new crossings, I have only come across snippets. You could make almost any ruling out of them...

A relation to tram stops:

Clause 18.01-2 of the State Planning Policy Framework states that:

“Transport routes should be located to achieve the greatest overall benefit to the community and with regard to making the best use of existing social, cultural and economic infrastructure, minimising impacts on the environment and optimising accessibility, safety, emergency access, service and amenity.”


And another - Boroondara Council:

Clause 18.01-2 - Declared Highways, Railways and Tramways:

New uses or development of land near an existing or proposed transport route should be planned or regulated to avoid detriment to, and where possible enhance, the service, safety and amenity desirable for that transport route in the short and long terms.
• Higher land use densities and mixed use developments should be encouraged near railway stations, major bus terminals, transport interchanges, tramways and principal bus routes.
• Pedestrian access to the public transport should be facilitated and safeguarded.
  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland
What was the last new level crossing along a public road to be built In Victoria ? (not Including road/rail duplication or rebuilds)

One at North Shore over the Midway siding comes to mind.
  Grantham Minister for Railways

Location: I'm with stupid!
Sounds good. You can't have a level crossing accident on one that isn't there! This is a good thing as far as I am concerned.

M
  toxation Chief Commissioner

Location: Cobram, Victoria
What was the last new level crossing along a public road to be built In Victoria ? (not Including road/rail duplication or rebuilds)

One at North Shore over the Midway siding comes to mind.
"Nightfire"


There are at least two level crossings on the Echuca Wharf spur. When was it built?

The level crossings are the roundabout and the entrance into what I think is the information centre.
  VBAndy Chief Commissioner

Wharf line was opened in 2002, long before this new rule.
  PE Chief Train Controller

To throw in a curly one, how would this affect Tourist Railways?
"Ballast_Plough"


This applies to all railways in Victoria including tourist and heritage operations.
  Ballast_Plough Chief Commissioner

Location: Lilydale, Vic
Exactly. My point being that some tourist railway extensions could possibly get knocked on the head if this ruling had to be enforced as most preservation groups wouldn't have the funds or expertise to carry out such works. I guess would either come down to the clause about Ministers exemption (due to tourist railways running at slow speeds) or a technicality that in most cases, preservation groups are restoring old lines and therefore such crossings already exist - but just need to be re-built.
  NR77 Chief Commissioner

To throw in a curly one, how would this affect Tourist Railways?
"Ballast_Plough"


This applies to all railways in Victoria including tourist and heritage operations.
"PE"

That won't be too good for CHTR when they extend to Trentham then Sad
  Bills_Billboards Chief Commissioner

To throw in a curly one, how would this affect Tourist Railways?
"Ballast_Plough"


This applies to all railways in Victoria including tourist and heritage operations.
"PE"

That won't be too good for CHTR when they extend to Trentham then Sad
"NR77"


An interesting view on it if the rails are still in place at the crossings could it be that the crossing was never removed even though the rest of the line was

Bill
  Ballast_Plough Chief Commissioner

Location: Lilydale, Vic
Thats one of the technicalities I'm interested in. My understanding with some of the road laws concerning trucks / buses is that they need to come to a complete stop at some level crossings - even if the line is completely closed. By removing the rails or asphalting over them, it removes status as a level crossing. If the line was ever to be re-opened, would such a crossing be deemed a new crossing (and needing grade separation) or would it be classed as a previously constructed crossing and therefore exempt?
  fabricator Chief Commissioner

Location: Gawler
And just what do they plan to do if they build a new freight terminal, going to need to have a level crossing somewhere for the trucks to get in and out.
  Ballast_Plough Chief Commissioner

Location: Lilydale, Vic
I think it applies to level crossings around the state - designed to separate high speed rail traffic from high speed road traffic. Freight depots wouldn't have high speed trains tearing through. Possibly one reason that tourist railways might get exempted - low speed trains.
  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland
And just what do they plan to do if they build a new freight terminal, going to need to have a level crossing somewhere for the trucks to get in and out.
"fabricator"


I don't think sidings are Included In the rule, as It would be nearly Impossible for a grade separation to work In a terminal/Industrial area.

The rule Is more for new public roads and new railways links.
  412M Assistant Commissioner

I can't remember exactly where (on the spark network), but shortly after the new rule/law was introduced a council built two roads on either side of a train line to within 5m of track centre, then said they were going to build a level crossing to link them. The RTBU and Vic Govt. made threats along the lines of 'If that level crossing is made, no trains will run on that line at all.' This resulted in the council having to spend several million on ripping up the roads, relocating some driveways and building a new bridge (the last time a council tried ignoring this rule).

I think in 2003-2004, there was a level crossing made in Bairnsdale near the up end of the logs siding, which was allowed on the condition that when the trains returned it was removed, which could be the last level crossing in Victoria made. As for level crossings that aren't used but still have rails, I guess they would have to be counted as existing level crossings, although the Govt. would probably argue that the rails aren't connected to any system and therefore it must be a new level crossing.
  Nightfire Minister for Railways

Location: Gippsland
I can't remember exactly where (on the spark network), but shortly after the new rule/law was introduced a council built two roads on either side of a train line to within 5m of track centre, then said they were going to build a level crossing to link them. The RTBU and Vic Govt. made threats along the lines of 'If that level crossing is made, no trains will run on that line at all.' This resulted in the council having to spend several million on ripping up the roads, relocating some driveways and building a new bridge (the last time a council tried ignoring this rule).
"412M"

The place Is Aylmer Road Lyndbrook, On the Cranbourne line (I don't think a road bridge has been built there ether, "no crossing at all")

I think in 2003-2004, there was a level crossing made in Bairnsdale near the up end of the logs siding, which was allowed on the condition that when the trains returned it was removed, which could be the last level crossing in Victoria made. As for level crossings that aren't used but still have rails, I guess they would have to be counted as existing level crossings, although the Govt. would probably argue that the rails aren't connected to any system and therefore it must be a new level crossing.
"412M"

Macarthur/Macculloch Street crossing In Bairnsdale was built/opened In 1994 ? (after rail traffic on the Stratford - Bairnsdale line was suspended) on the condition that the crossing would be closed again If trains were to again return to the station, (as they have) and the crossing Is now closed (the crossing didn't have lights/bells or even signs)

I think there may of been a crossing at Macarthur/Macculloch Street In the early days.
  62440 Chief Commissioner

Grieve Parade and Maidstone St were opened in 1985 on the brand new railway from Altona to Laverton. These would just about be the last new level crossings on new electrified passenger tracks (especially as this was the last new electric railway in the Metro area)
WW
  David_Keating Locomotive Driver

The truck bypass around Benalla that crosses the Oaklands was opened around 1999
  Myrtone Chief Commissioner

Location: North Carlton, Melbourne, Victoria
To throw in a curly one, how would this affect Tourist Railways?
"Ballast_Plough"

This applies to all railways in Victoria including tourist and heritage operations.
"PE"


So does it then apply even to trams and light rail on off street track?
  cascade39 Junior Train Controller

Interesting lift from Vict Dept of Transpt "Railway crossing safety initiatives"
Red light cameras

Red light cameras were trialled for 12 months at Springvale Road in Nunawading and on the Midland Highway at Bagshot north of Bendigo. ALCAM was used to select the locations. Criteria for selection included location on a passenger rail line, road and rail vehicle volumes, existence of active controls (such as flashing lights and boomgates), and an accident or near miss record of more than one incident a year.

Safety cameras have now been installed at the level crossing on Midland Highway and from early 2010, these cameras will have the capabilities to enforce traffic offences at the level crossing including speeding and disobeying level crossing warning signals such as flashing red lights.

Crossings fitted with cameras will also have yellow box markings - a yellow paint grid - painted over the road surface at the level crossing to indicate the area of potential danger for a motor vehicle to be sitting on.

http://www.transport.vic.gov.au/Doi/Internet/transport.nsf/AllDocs/8EE1EDA7067A3EE1CA2571AF0005EEFC?OpenDocument#alcam
  C500 Junior Train Controller

Would this also apply for extension of an existing crossing?
For example, this crossing here:

http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&geocode=&q=pakenham,+victoria&sll=37.0625,-95.677068&sspn=40.953203,93.076172&ie=UTF8&hq=&hnear=Pakenham+Victoria,+Australia&ll=-38.078138,145.474386&spn=0.002491,0.005681&t=h&z=18

Recently the road has been upgraded to a boulevard type road, and there is clear evidence that the road has been planned to be extended over the railway line and continue most of the way along until the Princes Highway, but the dual carriageway currently ends at the rail crossing.
  davesvline Chief Commissioner

Location: 1983-1998
I suspect it would depend on how pedantic the government wanted to be.

If a level crossing already exists, you could argue the at the new directive as per wongm original post, states clearly that "planned" crossings (read as  - new not existing) shall be grade separated. Hence, existing ones don't have to be. If the govt wants to retrospectively do that (ala Springvale Rd) - thats upto them.

I read this as;
- if its an existing crossing, and you wish to upgrade/duplicate the road, or the track through it - thats fine - upgrade the crossing. This is not a new road crossing a railway site!

- If its a new road, or a new crossing of an existing road over an existing track - you must grade separate. This muste meet the current directive.

- If its a new track somewhere to cross over an existing road, you must grade separate also. Also as per the current directive.     I don't know if this would apply to non urban areas, but suspect this is where the ministers permission would be sought for an exemption, as stated in the the directive.

Regards
  B 67 Chief Commissioner

Location: Central Gippsland


I think in 2003-2004, there was a level crossing made in Bairnsdale near the up end of the logs siding, which was allowed on the condition that when the trains returned it was removed, which could be the last level crossing in Victoria made. As for level crossings that aren't used but still have rails, I guess they would have to be counted as existing level crossings, although the Govt. would probably argue that the rails aren't connected to any system and therefore it must be a new level crossing.
"412M"

Macarthur/Macculloch Street crossing In Bairnsdale was built/opened In 1994 ? (after rail traffic on the Stratford - Bairnsdale line was suspended) on the condition that the crossing would be closed again If trains were to again return to the station, (as they have) and the crossing Is now closed (the crossing didn't have lights/bells or even signs)

I think there may of been a crossing at Macarthur/Macculloch Street In the early days.
"Nightfire"


I know this is from August, but the crossing in question had hand-operated wooden gates originally. I understand that they were normally closed over the road and only opened on special occasions. The gates were removed when the crossing was re-opened after services ceased in the 90s. The remains of the gates were lying on the ground for years near the turntable bridge near the footbridge end of the yard. They may still be there actually, I've not checked for a long time.

Sponsored advertisement

Display from:   

Quick Reply

We've disabled Quick Reply for this thread as it was last updated more than six months ago.