Work on the Gap Road level crossing in Sunbury, Victoria is starting two years earlier than initially planned, with digging along the station starting in early July.
The dangerous and congested level crossing is the fourth level crossing to be removed on the Sunbury rail corridor extending from Sunbury to Footscray.
The Gap Road level crossing is Sunbury’s worst traffic bottleneck, with the boom gates down for up to 26 per cent of the morning peak. About 19,000 vehicles pass through the crossing each day, expected to rise to 27,000 by 2026.
In early July, digging will begin alongside Gap Road and Station Street as underground services get relocated underground and a small number of trees need to be removed before major construction on the new road underpass starts later this year.
Detailed design work continues on the project, but traffic changes will be needed on Gap Road to keep workers and road users safe until major construction is complete in 2022.
From 5 July, one westbound traffic lane will be closed on Gap Road/Station Street between Horne and Evans streets, with the other lane remaining open. The westbound bike lane and pedestrian path will also be closed, with detours in place.
In the coming months one lane will also be closed eastbound on Gap Road/Station Street, with one traffic lane remaining open and detours for cyclists and pedestrians.
The Gap Road level crossing will be replaced two years early, with a new rail bridge and a road underpass on Gap Road/Station Street between Horne Street and Evans Street, including a shared path on both sides to provide a safe connection for pedestrians and cyclists.
The road under rail design will ensure the heritage-listed Sunbury Station is preserved and have the least impact on rail services during construction, although there will still be some disruption at times.
The project is part of the Sunbury Line Upgrade, which will prepare the line for bigger, more modern trains that will run when the Metro Tunnel opens in 2025 – giving passengers access to five new stations in Melbourne’s CBD, Arden, Parkville and St Kilda Road.
Buses will replace trains along the Sunbury Line from 9.00pm Friday 2 July to Thursday 8 July for 24-hour works on the upgrade, including installation of new overhead power line structures and platform upgrades.