Shutdown and upgrade of Pakenham/Cranbourne and Frankston line to occur over January and February 2018

Spring Street has released details of a large shutdown of the Pakenham/Cranbourne and Frankston lines which will allow workers to complete major upgrades to the rail infrastructure. The work is required to allow for the introduction of the new High Capacity Metro Trains (HCMTs) and will involve upgrading power & catenary, signalling and communications equipment in the Dandenong (Pakenham/Cranbourne) corridor. The Frankston line is seeing the...

Melbourne Metro Tunnel construction viewing areas open as new shortlist of bidders announced

From this week passers-by on Swanston Street will be able to get a glimpse of the progress at the newly named Town Hall station construction site. The Lord Mayor and Public Transport Minister unveiled the viewing platforms on Wednesday. To coincide with the opening of the viewing areas on the footpath of Swanston Street, it was announced that demolition of the underground car park at City Square and attached to the Westin will accelerate over...

Melbourne Metro Station names revealed as Development Plans are released

The names of the five new stations that together form the Melbourne Metro Rail Project have been revealed following an extensive public submission process that attracted over 50,000 suggestions. Premier Daniel Andrews and Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan visited the CBD North work-site to announce the new station names at what will eventually be known as State Library Station. State Library Station will have an underground connection...

City-wide trial shows how road use charges can reduce traffic jams

Leslie A. Martin , University of Melbourne and Sam Thornton , University of Melbourne Road congestion in large Australian cities is estimated to cost more than A$16 billion a year . Economists have long argued the best way to improve traffic flow is to charge drivers for their contribution to road congestion. We have now analysed data collected from 1,400 drivers across Melbourne to see whether road user charging can change their behaviour in...

The spotlight briefly shines on Melbourne Airport Rail Link once again

Articles in The Age and Herald Sun this morning and later from the ABC have reported on the first signs of what Victorians might expect from the Melbourne Airport Rail Link which, thanks to a Federal government cash commitment, has seen the speeding up of a project which has broad populist appeal. The drops to The Age and Herald Sun reported that the Premier would give a speech before the Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry today that...

Toolern not likely the last station to be added to a future electrified Melton line

Earlier this month the State Government announced a new station between Rockbank and Melton would be built at Toolern. The announcement is one of many which are slowly creating a picture of how an electrified metro line between Sunshine and Melton will look. In the most recent budget, half a billion dollars was set aside for Ballarat line upgrades. On top of adding capacity further down line beyond Melton - new passing loops, closing the...

Victoria starts trial of an 'autonobus' at La Trobe University

The trial of an autonomous bus - or autonobus as it is being dubbed - has kicked off in Victoria on La Trobe University's main campus after other states have begun similar trials. Autonomous buses are just that: small buses with no driver, packed with sensors so the vehicle can feel its way from A to B. The vehicle in question does not have an internal combustion engine - it's electric - and manufactured by French company Navya . One of the key...

Wraps come off new linear park plans between Caulfield and Dandenong

On Monday the Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan unveiled the plans for 22.5 hectares of new open space that is being created under and beside the elevated track and stations now under construction between Caulfield and Dandenong. In so doing, the public now has access to a wider range of renders which depict in far greater dealer how each precinct will appear once complete. A new 17 kilometre walking/cycling path which will connect the...

New station canopy and escalators appear at Noble Park

It's similar to when a new high-rise building progresses beyond ground levels and reaches a point where the new facade starts to appear - the 'will it look like the renders?' questions can start to be answered. At Noble Park, where the new elevated station is being constructed adjacent to the existing railway station, the first piece of the distinct canopy which is a feature of all five new stations in the Dandenong corridor has appeared on site...

Freeing up the huge areas set aside for parking can transform our cities

Dorina Pojani , The University of Queensland ; Iderlina Mateo-Babiano , University of Melbourne ; Jonathan Corcoran , The University of Queensland , and Neil Sipe , The University of Queensland Parking may seem like a “pedestrian” topic (pun intended). However, parking is of increasing importance in metropolitan areas worldwide. On average, motor vehicles are parked 95% of the time . Yet most transport analysis focuses on vehicles when they are...


Development & Planning

Friday, March 16, 2018 - 00:00
As reported in The Age late last month speculation is growing that developer Cbus Property is leading the charge to acquire a combined development site at 140-150 Queen Street and 27 McKillop Street. This would follow what would appear to be a pre-emptive purchase of a neighbouring site at 423 Bourke Street, which an 11-storey office block currently occupies.

Policy, Culture & Opinion

Sunday, March 11, 2018 - 13:00
The Victorian Government has announced it will ban the use of aluminium cladding panels that have a polyethylene core of more than 30% and expanded polystyrene will also be banned on buildings with 3 or more levels. The changes were announced by the Planning Minister, Richard Wynne, on Saturday morning along with new guidelines for building surveyors.

Visual Melbourne

Monday, February 5, 2018 - 12:00
The various spaces and elements which combine to form RMIT's New Academic Street (NAS) have progressively begun to open to students and visitors alike. I was recently fortunate enough to be part of an informal group tour through the completed spaces within NAS, led by Harrison and White which had a hand in the project.

Transport & Design

Friday, March 16, 2018 - 17:00
Comment There's much to admire about Rodney Maddock's advocacy piece in The Conversation - ' Our growing big cities need new centres of employment - here's Melbourne's chance ' - the three projects he advocates for have been in the public domain for quite a while now.

Sustainability & Environment