The 45th dangerous and congested level crossing has now been removed – with trains now running on the new one-kilometre rail bridge at Werribee Street, safely separated from traffic.
Minister for Transport Infrastructure Jacinta Allan and Member for Werribee Tim Pallas today visited the Werribee site to inspect the new rail bridge and unveil designs for the 30,000 square metres of open space that the elevated rail will deliver for the community.
Werribee Street is a key connection between the suburbs of Werribee and Wyndham Vale – removing the crossing will improve travel and safety for the 20,000 vehicles that pass through each day, meaning no more long waits at the boom gates while freight trains pass, which can be up to 1.5 kilometres long.
When the Victorian and Australian governments’ $4 billion Geelong Fast Rail project is delivered, it will also use this elevated rail bridge – and the extra services to Geelong won’t cause more congestion for the Wyndham community.
The new open space will be delivered in the coming months, adjoining existing parkland around the Wyndham Park and the Werribee River. Alongside more green space and a brand-new skate park, a pair of gigantic emu feet will take pride of place at the base of two bridge columns – the creation of prominent indigenous artist Vicki Couzens.
The emu art is based on a traditional Wadawurrung story, and the 8.5-metre-long sculptures will be echoed through a series of footprints etched into a pathway leading towards the Werribee River. A ‘yarning circle’ representing an emu’s nest will be a central point for gathering and reflection.
The skate park will consist of a mixture of ramps, rails, and obstacles for beginners through to experienced skaters, providing more options for locals of all ages to get active outdoors.
At Werribee’s nearby Cherry Street, the level crossing is on track to be removed by Easter, well ahead of its original 2022 target date – with a new road bridge separating cars from trains, connecting Tarneit Road to Princess Highway.
Major construction on the area’s third level crossing removal project at Old Geelong Road, Hoppers Crossing, is about to kick off – with crews starting work next week to lift huge retaining wall panels into place, the first steps in building a new road bridge that will remove this notorious crossing for good.
For more information about these projects visit levelcrossings.vic.gov.au