The Last Train From Mitcham

Karen McTackett By Karen McTackett, 3rd Jan 2014 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/ktr9nbo8/
Posted in Wikinut>News>Off Beat

Mitcham Station, Vic, Australia, is not just getting a face lift, it is getting a full body reconstruction.

9 Hours Too Late!

This morning, a couple pulled their car up near the Mitcham Railway Station and the male passenger exited the vehicle – he was obviously hoping to catch the train, but he was about nine hours too late.

At 12:48am on Friday, January the 3rd, 2013, the last train from Melbourne City in Victoria, Australia, arrived at Mitcham station in much the same way as they had all day. There was nothing special about it, it would seem. Tired and incapacitated passengers leaned against the window and a lone drunk man danced to a tune in his head outside the station. The train continued on its way to Belgrave with no fanfare or acknowledgement. Just another train on just another day. But there was something different about this train. At the station, the ticketing machines and all but one MYKI card reader had been removed and a man in a fluoro orange vest waited at the roller door to pull it down behind the last passenger for the final time.

A New Station

OK, so the title may be a little dramatic but it was the last train from the OLD Mitcham station. The train station at Mitcham in the eastern suburbs of Melbourne is being rebuilt as part of The Mitcham Level Crossing Removals Project through an alliance between VicRoads, Public Transport Victoria (PTV), Metro Trains Melbourne (MTM), John Holland and KBR1. The station is being dropped below the heavily congested Mitcham and Rooks Roads to allow a free flow of traffic at peak times. Up until today, cars were forced to stop at the level crossings on both roads that link Maroondah Highway to the ever busy six lanes of Canterbury Road with every train that came through Mitcham. You can imagine the traffic build up and the chaos that these crossings were causing with the increased traffic as Melbourne's outer suburbs swell with a growing population.

It is a long overdue change and an intriguing one to watch. The new station has been slowly fitted together like a lego-land artwork over the past several months but today is the day that the old station is closed forever. Over the next three weeks, intense work will ensure the new station will be ready for its first passengers on Saturday, January the 25th, 2014.

According to Vicroads, the new Mitcham Railway Station will feature:

- New premium station which will be manned from first train to last each day
- Bus interchange facilities on the north and south side of the railway line
- New ‘kiss n ride’ and taxi facilities.
- New pedestrian access way at the end of Station Street
- New access way at Simla Street for vehicles and buses to access the station car-park and transport interchange
- New bicycle and pedestrian path along the railway line between Rooks Road and Mitcham Road.

Easing the Impact

Until the opening of the new station which promises to be as nonchalant and uneventful as the closing and slow destruction of the old station, regular rail users will be accommodated for with direct bus services running from Ringwood Station to Blackburn Station with stops at Heatherdale, Mitcham, Nunawading and Laburnam stations. Metro has been quite informative with constant announcements over the PA system for the last few days about the closures and closure announcements on the website. Local residents have also been kept well informed about the progress of the works and have received regular notifications of impending night time works.

I snapped a few shots of the last train from the old station and I intend on snapping one of the first train through the new station. I feel these are events that need to be documented and kept for historical records so I look forward to waking up early on the 25th and seeing the new station in action. As I live near the station, I will be documenting the works over the next three weeks and taking some better quality photos as one station is removed and another is created.

Reference

1. VicRoads, 16 December, 2013.
http://www.vicroads.vic.gov.au/Home/RoadProjects/LevelCrossingRemovalProjects/Construction/MitchamLevelCrossingRemovals.htm Viewed 3rd January, 2014.

Tags

Melbourne, Mitcham, Ptv, Public Transport, Rail, Rail Roads, Railnetwork, Railroad, Railroad Tracks, Railroads, Rails, Railway, Railway Station, Railways, Traffic, Train, Training, Travel, Travel By Train, Travel Tip, Travelling, Victoria

Meet the author

author avatar Karen McTackett
www.iamacademy.com.au
* Professional Writer/Facilitator/Speaker
* Writing Mentoring & Freelancer
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Comments

author avatar Fern Mc Costigan
3rd Jan 2014 (#)

Interesting post and informative as well, Happy New Year 2014!

Reply to this comment

author avatar Karen McTackett
3rd Jan 2014 (#)

Thank you Fern. I was just out taking some photos of the deconstruction/construction. It's fascinating to witness :) Happy New Year to you too.

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