Charman Road Level Crossing
Rail Under Road
Another 8 level crossings on the Frankston Line are due to be removed. Three have already been grade separated with a Rail Under Road solution: Ormond, Bentleigh and McKinnon. This article explains how Charman Road can be Rail Under Road also.
1. Park Road
• Logic suggests that Park Road should be included in any Level Crossing removal. This would ensure both these major thoroughfares have their crossings
2. Raised Topography
• Cheltenham station is on a slight hill with the railway line rising up to the station and dropping off at both sides.
• Starting before Charman Road, a cutting would could be eased into the ground and only require a small gradient on the other side of Park Road to meet the existing track.
3. Ground Water
• Groundwater levels are similar to current Rail Under Road sites (ie: Ormond) so not an issue.
4. Soil Type
• Soil type (sand) can be supported with proper pile foundations, correct concrete mix, and soil anchors (as per Ormond).
5. Roadway Clearance
• Only a 6 metre clearance is required to put Rail Under Road compared with 9 metres for Rail Over Road (aka Elevated Sky Rail).
Groundwater Depth: Approximately 12m below grade (track level)
(Source: Vic Govt Bore logs, www.vvg.org.au)
Soil Type: Swamp and Lake Deposits / Inland Dune Deposits (silty clayey sand or sand)
(Source: Victorian geology maps)
Traffic Volume: High, 12,300 vehicles/day, 222 trains/day, Boom gates are down for an average of 35 minutes between 7am to 9am
(Source: LXRA community consultation information displays)
Other Factors: Distance from Park Road to the new Southland Station is over 1km.
Car parks surrounding station allow for parallel construction as carried out at Springvale.
Rail Under Road – Advantages
• Rail Under Road will also reduce, rather than increase, air-borne pollution.
• A rail line in a cutting will be much quieter than elevating it 9m in the air.
• Less visual pollution and less opportunity for graffiti
Retain Property Values
• Property values will be preserved or increased, rather than facing a 20% decline as predicted with Sky Rail, “elevated rail” or railway bridges
Less Council maintenance and increased rate revenue
• No extra cost to council for cleaning (graffiti, removing dumped rubbish, etc) under an elevated railway bridge if the crossings are put in cuttings
• No loss in rate revenue as property values will not decline
• A Rail Under Road option will be a proper long-term infrastructure solution that will increase the amenity of area and leave a lasting legacy that will not be an eye sore for generations to come.
• Proposed Council development of the Cheltenham streetscape will not be dominated by an elevated rail.