Balcombe Road, Mentone

Level crossing at Balcombe Road in Mentone with boom gates down and a train running through.

Major construction to remove the dangerous and congested level crossing at Balcombe Road, Mentone will begin soon.

With early works already underway, major construction to lower the rail line into a trench will start by mid-2019, taking around 18 months. This will coincide with the removal of the crossings at nearby Park and Charman Roads in Cheltenham. All three will be gone for good by late 2020.

Mentone will also get a new station, with the existing heritage-listed station incorporated into the final design as part of a new ‘heritage bridge’ over the rail line. The new station location will integrate with the Mentone Renaissance project.

The five heritage-listed trees in the Mentone station gardens will be protected in the gardens during works and will form the centrepiece of a re-landscaped station garden at the end of the project.

The project will also include more than three kilometres of walking and cycling paths connecting the Mentone and Cheltenham station precincts, landscaping, improved lighting and accessibility and car parking,

Major construction to remove the dangerous and congested level crossing at Balcombe Road, Mentone will begin soon.

With early works already underway, major construction to lower the rail line into a trench will start by mid-2019, taking around 18 months. This will coincide with the removal of the crossings at nearby Park and Charman Roads in Cheltenham. All three will be gone for good by late 2020.

Mentone will also get a new station, with the existing heritage-listed station incorporated into the final design as part of a new ‘heritage bridge’ over the rail line. The new station location will integrate with the Mentone Renaissance project.

The five heritage-listed trees in the Mentone station gardens will be protected in the gardens during works and will form the centrepiece of a re-landscaped station garden at the end of the project.

The project will also include more than three kilometres of walking and cycling paths connecting the Mentone and Cheltenham station precincts, landscaping, improved lighting and accessibility and car parking,

Have a question about the level crossing removal in Mentone?

Ask us your question below and we'll get back to you with the information you need. If your question is urgent, give us a call on 1800 762 667 (24 hours, 7 days).

Ask us

  • Have these works contributed to the amount of time that boomgates are down? Several times a day, motorists have to wait for up to 20 minutes for boom gates to open, even when there is no train in the vicinity.

    Mentoneresident asked 15 days ago

    Hi, thanks for your question. We understand your frustration with boom gate down times - that's why we're getting rid of 75 level crossings throughout Melbourne. The ones at Cheltenham and Mentone will be gone by mid-2020. 

    In the meantime, our works are not affecting the timing of boom gates at Mentone and Cheltenham. If there are service issues, we recommend you contact Metro Trains on 1800 800 007.

  • Where can we view the final drawings/plans for the Mentone station

    Mentone guy asked 6 months ago

    Hi Mentone Guy, you'll be able to find our artist renders for Mentone Station here: levelcrossings.vic.gov.au/media/image-gallery#gallery-358799-1 and we will have further images to share as the project progresses. Major construction kicks off in the middle of this year and will be complete at Mentone in early 2021.

  • Hi It is now very late 2018. Have the designs been finalised and has anything commenced yet? When will construction commence for both stations? When will final designs be published and distributed to the community?

    Danielconsidine asked 10 months ago

    Hi Daniel, the initial works at Cheltenham are underway. This involves clearing land at properties we have acquired near the rail line. You may have noticed some site fencing going up on Park Road, Churchill Avenue and Blagdon Street. Main construction will get underway at both sites next year. 

    While we can't give you the exact dates for the start of these major works yet, stay tuned as we will have more information to share early in the new year, when the designs are finalised. 

  • Ok the Mentone crossing is due to start late 2018, we are now in late 2018, with no published news for 10 months. Where are we at ??

    Balcomberes asked 12 months ago

    Hi Balcomberes, thanks for your question. We're keen to get cracking on removing the level crossings at Mentone and Cheltenham, but there is still work to do on detailed designs, including the new stations. We will have more information to share with the community soon. Initial work will start at Cheltenham before the end of the year, with the main construction at Cheltenham and Mentone underway next year.

  • Why can't the car park be placed underground?

    JDF asked about 1 year ago

    Hi again JDF. We are still working through the commuter car parking options for Mentone and will have detailed designs to share with the community later this year. Stay tuned!

  • The railway trenches built on the Frankston Line have a hideous wall material of steel and what appears to be sprayed-on concrete render. Furthermore, the stations are dark and dingy, with excessive steel and concrete. If Mentone station is to be sunk, are there any plans for a more traditional railway station look, in order to fit in with the surroundings?

    JDF asked about 1 year ago

    Hi JDF and thanks for your feedback. We value the opinion and input of the local community. Throughout our engagement beginning in early 2016, we have consistently heard that the Mentone community values the existing heritage-listed station and gardens, and want us to find a solution for the new station that works well with the existing look and feel of the area. 

    We are currently finalising designs and will have more information to share with the community later this year. There will be further opportunities to get involved and provide feedback on a range of elements. 

    We encourage you to keep an eye out on our website or register for e-updates at levelcrossings.vic.gov.au/contact/subscribe for these opportunities.

  • My first email again as I remember it. I live on the third floor of the new Alton appartment building overlooking the railway. I am pleased that a trench solution is being used. However the trench needs to be roofed between the two appartment buildings to minimise noise from the trench coming up. The area could be carparking or open space. The multi-storey carpark could be built with two levels below ground to minimise its impact from obstructing views , incuding from my appartment, and to minimise people in the carpark looking into the residential appartments. Building Codes restrict this for residetial building and I feel for the people fronting Balcombe Road in the other appartment building. Susan

    susancarson asked over 1 year ago

    Hi Susan, thanks for your question. We understand you’re concerned about operational noise from trains. The project must comply with the Victorian Passenger Rail Infrastructure Noise Policy, which ensures mitigation measures must be taken to prevent an increase in existing noise levels in the rail corridor. For more information on this policy visit: https://your.levelcrossings.vic.gov.au/mentone/documents and download the Rail Noise Factsheet. 

    Thanks for your suggestions about the proposed multi-storey car park. We’ll pass these to our engineering team for consideration during the next phase of design later this year.

  • Hello, will the train still sound horn in lieu of level crossing (travelling from City to Mentone) or will the underpass eliminate need to sound horn, until approach of station. Asking regarding potential purchase of an apartment facing train line. Thank you.

    BalcombeQUERY asked over 1 year ago

    Hello, 

    Thanks for your query. 

    When we remove the level crossing at Balcombe Road, Mentone, train drivers won't need to sound the horn and, of course, there will be no boom gate bell noise either. Where a level, or pedestrian crossing remains, for example Warrigal Road or Latrobe Street, train drivers will still sound the horns.

    Good luck with the house hunting!  

  • I live in the apartments directly opposite the Mentone station car park, and according to your plans, a multi-level carpark is being put in. This is concerning as I don't want to be looking directly at a big concrete building every time I look out of my window, and I also don't want people in the car park to look directly into my apartment. Surely there is enough room for parking as it is now? However, if you do go ahead with this new car park, how big will it be? How far back from the road/footpath will it be? Mentone station has always been a lovely building with nice surrounds, and a big concrete car park would be hideous.

    mitchstoneman asked over 1 year ago

    Hi Mitch, thanks for your enquiry. 

    A rail trench design has a bigger footprint than the railway line in its current state. This therefore encroaches on a number of the existing commuter car parking spaces.

    We have a minimum requirement for no net loss of car parking across our sites and to ensure we are putting back the same amount of parking that is currently available at Mentone, a multi-level car park is required. 

    This has been part of our design since 2016 and will stand at 3 storeys and have 185 car parking spaces.The set-back requirements will be investigated during our detailed design phase, but at this early stage it is being shown as directly abutting the footpath on Balcombe Road.

    The existing station building will be retained and re-purposed as part of the station precinct and we are still refining the designs for this and for car parking. We are fully aware of the heritage significance of the station and gardens. 

    We appreciate your concerns about the view from your apartment and also overlooking, and we will be investigating these matters further during our detailed design phase later this year. 

    If you would like further information and to have a chat with a member of the team, please let us know and we will be back in touch with you.

  • Thanks for your reply. I know the Mentone project will commence in late 2018 but how long is it expected to take to complete? What is the scheduled completion date please? Thanks GV

    GV asked over 1 year ago

    Hi again GV, the Mentone project is still in the design and planning phase and we therefore can't provide exact dates. 

    We expect the project to take around two years, so with work expected to start in late 2018, it should be finished in late 2020. We will be able to share more specific timeframes later this year.

  • 1) What is the time-line and completion date of the Mentone station? 2) What public transport will be offered during the period of work on the Mentone station and what are the routes and timetables?

    GV asked over 1 year ago

    HI GV, thanks for your enquiry.

    We're still finalising the design for Mentone and expect the project to commence in late 2018. Rail replacement buses will run when the rail line is closed for disruption. 

    These run to the same frequency as trains and stop at each station, but we don't have dates, exact routes or line closure information yet as we are still in the planning phase.

  • There was a planning map of the Balcombe rd crossing and I am unable to find it, Specifically what is planned around Teague ave Mentone.

    Finally asked over 1 year ago

    Hi, thanks for your enquiry. Our current designs show the trench continues past Teague Ave and returns to grade just past Patty Street. There is room allocated for potential landscaping next to the trench, and the pedestrian crossing at Patty Street will be retained as a pedestrian overpass.

  • Why wouldn't Warrigal rd crossing be included in the project - seems dumb to come back later and undo some if the work you are doing now with Balcombe rd. The extra cost would be minimal compared to coming back later - as well as the inconvenience.

    Arjay asked about 2 years ago

    Hi Arjay, while we'd love to remove all of the level crossings around Melbourne, we need to focus on the 50 nominated for removal by 2022. There are a number of factors considered when assessing level crossing removals, including congestion, safety and overall economic benefits. It's helpful to know where people are having frustrations so these crossings can be considered in future.

  • I live at 7 Station St Mentone and will have the excavations very close to my property The Body Corporate has requested that we have roof repairs done just prior to the work starting My feeling is it would be better to wait until the work on the Crossing is completed as the Earth movement and constant vibration of Piledrivers ect is likely to cause settling of the structure and damage to the roof repairs . Please advise on what to do here thanks in advance David OBrien

    Station asked over 2 years ago

    Hi David, 

    Thanks for your enquiry. Without knowing the reason why your roof needs repairing we really can't comment on your situation. Keep in mind that construction works are not due to start at Mentone until late 2018. 

    The construction works will, at times, have associated vibration, however we don't expect any adverse impacts to properties adjacent to the railway line. Once appointed, our construction partner will develop construction management plans detailing how construction works will take place and what mitigation measures will be put in place to limit impacts with consideration to things like vibration, noise and dust.  

    If you have any further questions, please don't hesitate to call us on 1800 762 667

  • Hi, I'm trying to complete a submission for mentone. The questions however relate to Cheltenham and not mentone. I have entered the submission through the mentone tile and the descriptor relates to mentone - although the first question is 'what is your interest in the Cheltenham level crossing removal project'!?Please fix this error - presumably this will mean that others may have filled in the submission incorrectly?

    iansum asked over 2 years ago

    Hi Ian, thanks for picking up on that! 

    The error has been rectified. All submissions filled in through the Mentone tile will be submitted as feedback to the Mentone Level Crossing Project regardless of the error. 

  • Will Como Pde be closed during major works.

    Kellys asked over 2 years ago

    Details of closures and other construction impacts are not yet finalised. Como Pde may have to be closed intermittently for works, however the project team will do their best to keep it open where possible. When a construction partner has been chosen and designs are refined, we will work with the community to notify of any road and rail closures. 

    If you haven't already, please sign up to our e-news at levelcrossings.vic.gov.au/subscribe to keep up with any disruption news. 

  • Will alternative accomodation be provided to residents directly affected and inconvenienceed by nighttime works? What arrangements will be Made by lxra?

    Kellys asked over 2 years ago

    During major construction we will work with directly affected residents to mitigate construction impacts. Where possible, noisy work will occur during the day. When noisy work must occur at night, we may relocate residents to alternate accomodation. 

  • Why can't I make a second submission? It is ridiculous to restrict submissions to one per account. There are lots of topics to cover

    Kellys asked over 2 years ago

    Hello Kellys, 

    Submissions are restricted to one submission per person. If you were not able to complete all your feedback in your submission form please send us an email at contact@levelcrossings.vic.gov.au and we would be happy to add any additional comments onto your response. 

  • Will rail park on Como Pde east be replanted with Australian native plants to return area to a setting that attracts Aust bird life?

    Kellys asked over 2 years ago

    Hi Kellys, 

    Thanks for your question. 

    We haven't reached that point in our design process yet, however if this is a priority for you, please submit a feedback form and let us know! 



  • Why isn't the trench being extended to allow grade separation at the Warrigal rd level crossing?

    Kerrie Saville asked over 2 years ago

    Hi Kerrie, 

    Thank you for your question. 

    There are 30 level crossings on the Frankston line, 12 will be removed as part of this project, meaning 18 will remain once the current works are complete. 

    Unfortunately, Warrigal Road level crossing in Mentone has not been selected for removal as part of our project. 


  • The adoption of the trench option for the crossing removal at Mentone is most welcome. It provides the opportunity to enhance the station precinct area whilst preserving the heritage character of the old station buildings and grounds. One suggestion I would make is to consider building a deck over the rail trench on the north side of Balcombe Road. There is an existing development on the east side of the railway line and new apartments are being built on the west side. At the ground level of the existing development there is a large retail space abutting the train line that has been used unsuccessfully as a gym but I believe is currently vacant. The possibility might exist for the conversion of this space into a couple of cafes/restaurants with outdoor tables spilling out on to part of a new deck. The rest of the deck could include planting and seating that would provide an inviting open space for the public. Is this something LXRA could consider in conjunction with the local council?

    atapley asked over 2 years ago

    Hi Allan,  

    Thank you for your comments.  

    We encourage you to formally lodge your suggestion and feedback by filling out our submission form at your.levelcrossings.vic.gov.au/mentone.   

    In the next couple of months, we'll be talking to the local community about a range of elements including public space and retail opportunities. 

    If you haven't already done so, we encourage you to sign up for our email updates so you can stay informed about the project: levelcrossings.vic.gov.au/subscribe.    

  • Consider roofing part of station area, Frankston side of existing heritage station to accommodate PT buses and taxis. This would place a centralized transit hub off Como Parade West with greater control over transit commuter safety and security, achieve more on street parking to assist local traders and therefore create a better travel flow

    Graham Bishop asked over 2 years ago

    Hi Graham, 

    Thank you for your comments. 

    The roofing (or decking) you are referring to is restricted by a standard which broadly states that if the deck is greater than 180m long, different kinds of access, exit and ventilation requirements are needed beyond what is required in our current design. This is why there is a gap in the decking between Balcombe Road and the heritage-listed buildings in our current design.  

    Revitalising these transport connections in this area is something we are currently exploring as part of the design process.

  • According to your roll plot diagrams the planned trench to remove the Balcombe Rd crossing will finish adjacent to Barry Street, east of the station. This is approximately 250 metres from the Warrigal Rd level crossing. The choice of a trench option will mean that a rail bridge solution will not be feasible for the eventual Warrigal Rd crossing removal. I know it is not "one of the top 50" the government keeps talking about but wouldn't it make sense to continue the trench to allow Warrigal Rd to be done as part of the same project? It would certainly be far more cost effective and would remove another high-volume crossing that suffers congestion and causes delays for road users.

    atapley asked over 2 years ago

    Hi Allan, 

    Based on our technical information, once we build a rail trench in Mentone, it will not be possible to build a rail bridge to remove the Warrigal Road level crossing.

    However, as we have stated previously, the removal of this level crossing is not currently included in our project scope.  

    Thank you for your continued interest in the project and thoughtful comments.

  • Can you please let me know if pedestrian access will be available 24/7 over the 'railway' whilst in construction phase? I work on one side of the railway, but live on the other side (both just off Balcombe Rd). I don't drive - and hope that I am not going to have to walk to Warrigal Rd, cross over and then walk back. Thanks.

    Grant asked over 2 years ago

    Hi Grant, 

    Thanks for your question. Once our construction partners are on board, we'll work closely with them to maintain pedestrian access where possible.

  • I am puzzled by the recent release of the plot diagram for this crossing removal. For the rail bridge option you are proposing to significantly reduce the available car parking on the northern side of the station and replace it with landscaping. Is this correct!

    atapley asked almost 3 years ago

    Thanks for your question, Alan. 

    Our roll plot diagrams show car parking around the station precinct replacing the current number of car parks for both options under consideration. Your understanding of the current concept design is correct, as a lot of replacement car parking can be allocated beneath the rail bridge itself.

  • Hi LXRA - I also will put forward why the Warrigal Rd crossing is not being looked at to be removed It is probably the most dangerous due to trains being at close to full speed rather than than even the Balcombe Rd crossing due to trains slowing down as they approach station, it is very short sighted to exclude this when you are significantly disrupting the Mentone area less than 500m down the line So in 5-10 years inevitably more money is spent going through same process as you are doing now and significantly affecting the area

    maz124 asked almost 3 years ago

    Thank you for your input on additional level crossings that you believe should be prioritised for removal. 

    We would love to remove every level crossing in Melbourne but given there are more than 170 in the metropolitan area, we're focussing on the 50 that have been identified and prioritised for removal. 

    We've been able to add Park Road in Cheltenham into the mix as our works at Charman Road would directly impact the area but given the distance between Balcombe Road and Warrigal Road, it really would be a whole new project.

  • Hi LXRA, it has been revealed that you decided to remove the Park road level crossing due to strong community support. I would think that the removal of the Warrigal road crossing, would have strong community support. Are you collecting community consulting on the Warrigal road crossing?

    Ben White asked almost 3 years ago

    Hi Ben,

    Thanks for your feedback around the crossing at Warrigal Road. We did look into this - the difference with Park Road is that our construction works for Charman Road would extend as far as Park Road. Given we would be affecting it anyway, it makes sense to get rid of it at the same time whereas with Warrigal Road, our works just don't extend that far. 

    We always welcome feedback about which crossings should be removed in future so thanks for sharing your thoughts. 


  • Hi, please answer my question.... I haven't received a response........ Hi there, Thanks for taking the time to visit Your Level Crossing and asking us a question. You asked: 'Hi, please answer the following: 1) why has increased noise impact to the wider mentone area not been identified as a likely issue in the literature provided? Elevated rail will mean that noise will travel a much greater distance and affect more residents. This is particularly relevant for late night freight trains. 2) why do the images of sky rail show pictures of community space, strolling families and activations when they will largely be used for car parking? Will you provide more accurate images as part of the consultation process? 3) why have so many people commented on the mentone forum that they live close to the rail but haven't received any letters/literature from you? 4) why hasn't the concept of a connected rail station and car park been considered, instead of two separate buildings as shown on the plans? 5) why isn't the concept of an underground car park being considered instead of a multi storey above ground development? 6) why isn't the option of capping the trench being considered - to utilise space for parkland and other appropriate uses above? This would be a wasted opportunity. 7) if I indicate in the questionnaire that bike paths and connectivity are important to me - do you interpret this as that I support elevated rail and not the trench option? I like bike trails and connectivity, but this can be achieved by the trench option also. 8) why was there noone available to answer questions of a technical nature at the community forums? Your representatives could only talk me through the plans that I'd already seen. 9) what is the estimated cost difference of an elevated rail and trench option? Now that you have built/are building both, I assume that you have an understanding of projected costs. 10) have you considered commercial partnerships as a way of increasing available funding and ensuring community needs and expectations are met. Many thanks ' We will get back to you as soon as possible with a response. Regards Level Crossing Removal Authority

    iansum asked almost 3 years ago

    Hi Ian,

    We've now replied to your list of questions. 

    Thanks for your feedback. 

  • Thank you for finally releasing some sketch photos of how the crossing will appear under the two options. They should have been released on day one of the public consultation period rather than just before it closes. I have to say that the rail bridge option looks truly awful and would completely change the character and visual amenity of the station precinct. The rail bridge is overpowering and monolithic. How could the government and LXRA possibly consider the construction of a rail bridge that will destroy the heritage value of the Mentone station and grounds?

    atapley asked almost 3 years ago

    Hi Alan,

    Thanks for noting your concerns about the rail bridge option. We've identified heritage as a really important consideration in Mentone and we're undertaking heritage assessments to work out how to best preserve Mentone's history as part of the project. 

    Thanks again for sharing your feedback.

  • I have viewed the crossings at Ormond, McKinnon and Bentleigh by train and McKinnon and Bentleigh by car/foot: brilliant! Clearly, dropping the rail is, I believe, the elegant environmental choice. I have done a rough plan drawing of the Mentone proposals and, having had children cross the line to go to kindergarten in Warrigal Rd. and Mentone Grammar (older children cross there) that excavating the extra couple of hundred metres to include going under the very busy Warrigal Rd. crossing would be a no-brainer. The marginal cost of doing this would be hugely less than the modification cost of doing it at a later date for which a significant outage would also be repeated.

    John asked almost 3 years ago

    Hi John,

    Thanks for your feedback on the removal of the level crossings at Ormond, McKinnon and Bentleigh. As you're no doubt aware, we've got two options on the table for Mentone - a trench and a bridge - so thanks for sharing your feedback on your preferred option. 

    Stay tuned for further updates and opportunities to get involved.

  • Hi, please answer the following: 1) why has increased noise impact to the wider mentone area not been identified as a likely issue in the literature provided? Elevated rail will mean that noise will travel a much greater distance and affect more residents. This is particularly relevant for late night freight trains. 2) why do the images of sky rail show pictures of community space, strolling families and activations when they will largely be used for car parking? Will you provide more accurate images as part of the consultation process? 3) why have so many people commented on the mentone forum that they live close to the rail but haven't received any letters/literature from you? 4) why hasn't the concept of a connected rail station and car park been considered, instead of two separate buildings as shown on the plans? 5) why isn't the concept of an underground car park being considered instead of a multi storey above ground development? 6) why isn't the option of capping the trench being considered - to utilise space for parkland and other appropriate uses above? This would be a wasted opportunity. 7) if I indicate in the questionnaire that bike paths and connectivity are important to me - do you interpret this as that I support elevated rail and not the trench option? I like bike trails and connectivity, but this can be achieved by the trench option also. 8) why was there noone available to answer questions of a technical nature at the community forums? Your representatives could only talk me through the plans that I'd already seen. 9) what is the estimated cost difference of an elevated rail and trench option? Now that you have built/are building both, I assume that you have an understanding of projected costs. 10) have you considered commercial partnerships as a way of increasing available funding and ensuring community needs and expectations are met. Many thanks

    iansum asked almost 3 years ago

    Hi there Ian, thanks for your list of questions. 

    We understand that the noise is an important issue - we're continuing with our detailed noise modelling so stay tuned for further updates. For more information in meantime you might want to check out our technical investigations update in our document library. Measures to lessen sound impacts will be developed in the next stage of the design process. We also expect to have more detailed artists impressions available at this time. 

    In regards to the car park – an above ground car park in the location shown is the best way to retain the current number of car parks for the station. 

    We understand bike trails and connectivity can be achieved in a trenched option, there is however more space available to play with for these opportunities in an elevated option but to answer your question, we wouldn't assume support for a particular option based on your response to this answer in our survey. 

    While we can get an indicative idea of costs, each individual location is different so assessments need to be done based on the surrounding area and engineering requirements, so we'll have a better understanding once we are further progressed with our planning and design process. 

    Commercial partnerships can be a great way to unlock value and make the most of projects, but once again, it does depend on the exact location and opportunities - you might be interested to read more about this concept here: http://yoursay.infrastructurevictoria.com.au/30-year-strategy/application/files/8214/7630/8983/IV18_Value_Capture_Options_Final_web.pdf 

    If you have any further questions, please feel free to give us a call on 1800 762 667 and we would be happy to help you out as best we can for this stage of the project.

  • The Warrigal Road level crossing is specifically mentioned in the Preliminary Assessment Report for the Balcombe Road level crossing. Could we assume that whatever occurs at Mentone (elevated rail or a trench option) would be continued through to Warrigal Road at some point in the future? If this is the case will Parkers Road, Parkdale be included in future level crossing removal project rollouts?

    Di@Parkdale asked about 3 years ago

    Hi there, Di,  

    Thanks for your question. At this stage, we are committed to removing the 50 most dangerous and congested level crossings in Melbourne by 2022, and Warrigal Road, Mentone and Parkers Road, Parkdale are not on the list. There are around 170 level crossings in Melbourne and while we'd love to remove them all, we need to focus on the first 50. 

    If the Warrigal Road level crossing was to be removed in future it is most likely that whatever option is chosen for Balcombe Road would need to be continued at Warrigal Road.

  • As far as I am aware no cost estimates have been published for any of the level crossing removals on the Frankston line. All we have seen in the preliminary assessment reports is either $$$ or $$$$. This is absolutely meaningless and provides no basis on which the community may sensibly judge the various options. I am aware that preliminary cost estimates have been prepared for each option for each crossing. Whilst the level of accuracy may only be +/- 25% or worse at this stage of the process it would be very useful to understand the scale of costs and the differentials between the options. We would then be better able to make informed comments. Could you please release the cost estimates whilst community consultation is still occurring?

    atapley asked about 3 years ago

    Hi there, thanks for your question. 

    Our assessment for reaching a Recommended Option for removing the level crossings is based on a range of criteria: community feedback, technical work and environmental considerations. We need to consider all these factors when making a recommendation and usually no single factor is decisive in selecting a design. 

    There are a number of different factors that influence the cost of each option, but generally a trenched option will be more expensive than a rail bridge. At this stage it is too early to tell the precise cost difference between the options, and as outlined above, cost is just one part of the assessment.

  • I asked the following question on 6 September but am yet to receive a reply. "The plans for the rail under road option state that "a multi-level car park is required to retain existing commuter car park numbers". The need for this is not apparent given that the diagrams for each option show no change in the presently available ground area for car parking. Could you please explain why this new car park is necessary given it will bias the cost comparison of the two options." Could you please advise when an answer may be forthcoming?

    atapley asked about 3 years ago

    Hi there,

    Sincere apologies for our delayed response. 

    We take up more land on the existing car park with the trenched option, which means a reduction in the current parking numbers. We need to replace it with a multi-storey parking building would be required to ensure no net-loss of parking facilities at the station.

  • I have been reviewing the 2D diagrams and there appears to be a problem with scaling. If we use the height of the elevated rail as the "scale" (ie. 8 metres) it suggests the height of the existing station building is about 6 metres. However, the actual height to the top of the gables is only around 4 metres. This incorrect scaling has the effect of diminishing the height of the rail bridge relative to the station. Could you please produce a new 2D diagram using correct scaling? I am also waiting to see artists' impressions of the rail bridge was were produced at an early stage for the Caulfield Dandenong Upgrade project. Could you please advise the timing for their release?

    atapley asked about 3 years ago

    Hi there,

    Thanks for your question.

    At this stage we have produced diagrams to guide the discussion around the options with the community. They are indicative and are not intended to provide detailed design, which we don't yet have as we don't have a Recommended Option for removing the level crossings. 

    At the next stage of our engagement, when we have a Recommended Design, we will have far more detailed information to share. In the meantime, keep an eye on our engagement Hub for sketch images, cross-sections and roll plots (long maps) for design option information. These are being progressively uploaded the individual site pages here: https://your.levelcrossings.vic.gov.au/

  • What about Parkdale? While they are at it why not remove this crossing as well?

    Nicolas asked about 3 years ago

    Hi there Nicolas,

    Thanks for your question. There are around 170 level crossings in Melbourne and while we'd love to remove them all we have to focus on the first 50, which is a major task by 2022.

  • When are the other level crossings going to be removed - Wickham rd, Highett rd, Warrigal rd, Parkers rd, etc.? It seems pointless to remove Balcombe rd and start the works near the Warrigal rd crossing without planning for the Warrigal rd crossing to be removed. Are we going to undo works for the Balcombe rd crossing removal when we remove the Warrigal rd crossing? If you think Warrigal rd crossing isn't congested, you haven't tried crossing there at peak hour. Same with Highett rd, Parkers rd and mordialloc. One would think that to have an efficient and safe rail and road system we need NO level crossings.

    Arjay asked about 3 years ago

    You're spot on - having no level crossings would make the road and rail networks much more efficient. 

    However, there are around 170 level crossings in Melbourne, and while we'd love to remove them all, getting rid of 50 by 2022 is a great start. We are noting other crossings throughout Melbourne that communities are keen to see removed, as part of any future level crossing removal work.

  • Current plans show the latrobe st (mentone) crossing will remain as is. Is that a guarantee it will not be changed?

    tata_monte asked about 3 years ago

    Hi there, 

    Thanks for your question, and we do apologise for the late response. 

    Previous consultation and traffic modelling shows that Latrobe Street is a quiet level crossing and could potentially be closed to traffic. We are seeking community feedback on this option before we make any decision, so make sure you get involved online or at one of our community information sessions. 

    More information can be found in the Preliminary Assessment Option document: http://levelcrossings.vic.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0004/68512/Balcombe-Rd-preliminary-assessment-options.pdf.pdf

  • Can the drawings be amended to show additional streets other than those directly impacted so we can have a point of reference as to where a elevated rail or trench would start and finish? I'd also like to see Bay Road, Southland and Warrigal Road included as points of reference for the Charman, Park and Balcombe Road design options

    Di@Parkdale asked about 3 years ago

    Hi Di,

    Many thanks for your questions, and apologies for the late response.

    The current phase of the project is aimed at assessing the options as they are indicatively shown, and this is why there is a lack of detail in some of the maps presented. The start and finish of the extent of the rail bridge and trench respectively are shown in the Preliminary Assessment Option document which can be viewed here: http://levelcrossings.vic.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0004/68512/Balcombe-Rd-preliminary-assessment-options.pdf.pdf

  • The plans for the rail under road option state that "a multi-level car park is required to retain existing commuter car park numbers". The need for this is not apparent given that the diagrams for each option show no change in the presently available ground area for car parking. Could you please explain why this new car park is necessary given it will bias the cost comparison of the two options.

    atapley asked about 3 years ago

    Hi there,

    Thanks for your question, and apologies it's taken so long to reply. 

    To ensure no net-loss of commuter car parking, a multi-storey car park would be required to retain the loss of parking adjacent to the corridor, where we will need to use some of the existing car park in order to construct the trench. 

    For more information, have a look at the Preliminary Options Assessment here: http://levelcrossings.vic.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0004/68512/Balcombe-Rd-preliminary-assessment-options.pdf.pdf

  • I would like to see the investigation reports into the various options that have been considered. I would like to review the technical data for myself. I would like to know if a full metro subway has been considered, and if not, why?

    Stephen asked about 3 years ago

    Hi Stephen,

    Thanks for your question, and sorry it's taken so long to post a reply.  

    There are currently two proposed options for the removal of the level crossing at Balcombe Road, Mentone. Other road-based options were assessed, but due to high levels of property acquisition these are no longer being pursued. 

     We are not looking to make large-scale changes along the Frankston line, such as a whole of corridor solution that may suit tunnelling. Instead, we are taking a site-by-site approach to removing the level crossings along the Frankston line. Tunnelling would also be so restrictively costly that it is not being considered. 

    We have a range of technical information and fact sheets on this site and will be progressively posting more information as our technical investigations conclude.  For more information, have a look at the Preliminary Options Assessment here: http://levelcrossings.vic.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0004/68512/Balcombe-Rd-preliminary-assessment-options.pdf.pdf


  • Hi , I am looking forward to the level crossing removal at Mentone due to the heavy traffic congestion at peak times . Reading this I am assuming there only 2 options for consideration over / under Balcombe Road. I am hoping the sky rail plan is not going ahead from Cheltenham to Mentone.

    Nick Brennan asked about 3 years ago

    Hi there, thanks for your comment - and apologies for the delayed response. 

    There are currently two proposed options for the removal of the level crossing at Balcombe Road, Mentone: a rail bridge and a rail trench. 

    Community feedback, along with technical and environmental considerations will inform this decision. For more information, have a look at the Preliminary Options Assessment here: http://levelcrossings.vic.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0004/68512/Balcombe-Rd-preliminary-assessment-options.pdf.pdf

  • How does a crossing “know” when a train is going to pass through? And how does it know not to put the boom gates down when a train is very close but stopped and not going through yet, (such as I often see north of Mordialloc station)?

    Stephen C-S asked about 3 years ago

    Hi Stephen,

    The train signalling system detects the presence of a train via a detection system known as a 'track circuit' - this can detect when the train reaches a certain position. Level crossing controls are configured to be activated at a certain position which is calculated to operate the crossing at the correct time to ensure the required warning time at the correct linespeed. The system when required can actually be configured to recognise if a train is deemed to be an express train or a stopping train (as described at Mordialloc) - as such a stopping train will actually operate the level crossing much later than an express train on the account that it is stopping at the platform. In this instance the required warning time is still provided and the level crossing will be protected by holding the signal at stop until the train is ready to depart. 

    Hope this answers your questions! 

  • The trench for the removal of the Balcombe Rd crossing finishes approximately 100 metres from the busy Warrigal Rd level crossing. Surely it would be very cost effective to extend this trench to allow the removal of this crossing as well, similar to what is being done with Charman & Park Roads Cheltenham?

    atapley asked about 3 years ago

    Hi, thanks for your question. 

    The level crossing at Warrigal Road has not been identified as one of the 50 most dangerous and congested in Melbourne making its removal out of the scope of this particular project.

    Removing Warrigal Road level crossing in the future would not require significant rework to the infrastructure required to remove the level crossing at Balcombe Road. Park Road is in very close proximity to Charman Road so in addition to community support for its inclusion, a future level crossing removal of Park Road would have involved significant rework to the Charman Road level crossing removal works and this was another reason for its inclusion.

  • If the rail passes overhead is it the intention of planners to have basketball courts where groups of teenagers will "hang out" and alienate the elderly section of the community and families with young children? If the rail passes overhead, will the new station incorporate the current heritage building and other elements of that era or be more of a modern design like the "Beehive" station in Sunshine?

    flatt asked about 3 years ago

    Hi there, thanks for your question. 

    If a rail bridge option is chosen there may be opportunities for new spaces and facilities in Mentone that appeal to a range of people, such as a cycle or pedestrian path. 

    But at this stage, it's too early to tell what that might look like, given we are in the options phase. Under either option, a new Mentone station would be built. It may be that the existing station building can form an entrance to the new station, or there may be other options, such as a history centre or a café, for example.

  • The Preliminary Options Assessment Report refers to a "Technical Investigations and Existing Conditions Report for Balcombe Road, Mentone" but I have not been able to find this report on your website. Could you please provide me with a copy or a link to the report?

    atapley asked about 3 years ago

    Hi there,

    The Technical Investigations Update is available in the Document library on the Mentone page on the Hub (right hand side of the page your.levelcrossings.vic.gov.au/Mentone

  • The comments about the non-removal of the Warrigal Road crossing are puzzling. Adjacent to this crossing are numerous schools - including Mentone Grammar, Kilbreda, St Bede's, Mentone Girls' Grammar and Mentone Primary School. Warrigal Road runs in a north/south direction whereas Balcombe Rd runs east/west. This means that parents & school children, and bus routes associated with these schools, will continue to use Warrigal Rd to access these schools - not Balcombe Rd as the route would be longer and you have to pass through the busy Mentone Village shopping precinct. As someone who has lived in the area since 1982 I don't see how Balcombe Rd could be seen as an alternative to Warrigal Rd. We have family who live in Parkdale and Mordialloc. Even if the Balcombe Rd crossing is removed we would continue to cross the railway line at Warrigal Rd and avoid the very busy intersection at Nepean Highway. Could you please explain why you believe there will be a reduction in vehicle numbers at Warrigal Rd?

    atapley asked about 3 years ago

    Hi there, thanks for your question. 

    We would love to remove every level crossing in Melbourne but with more than 170 in the metropolitan area, we're focussing on the first 50 that have been identified for removal. The level crossing at Warrigal road has not been identified as one of the 50 most dangerous and congested in Melbourne making its removal out of the scope of this particular project. Removing Warrigal Road level crossing in the future would not require significant rework of the infrastructure that we will put in to remove the level crossing at Balcombe Road. Our traffic modelling indicates there will be a reduction in vehicle numbers at retained crossings (for example, Warrigal Road) where a nearby level crossing is removed (for example, Balcombe Road).

  • For openers, that you for the work that you are doing. We all know that it is long overdue. Qn: For the trench option, why is it seen to be necessary for soil that is removed to be stored on local sports ovals? This was not done the the three crossings further up the line. Would you be repatriating the ovals - and when? Regards, Pat Cox

    Pat Cox asked about 3 years ago

    Hi there, thanks for your question. 

    It's too early for us to be certain how long construction of either option will take and what will be involved however we anticipate it would take place between 2018 and 2022. 

    The trench option would require the removal of more than 70,000 m3 of soil, which would potentially be stored on local ovals in Mentone until it can be transported off site in thousands of truck journeys. 

    We did something similar with the crossing removals up at Ormond, McKinnon and Bentleigh where the soil was stored and transported from EE Gunn Reserve. Check out this video to see how it all unfolded: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6A53mzQfYL8 and also these pics that show all the diggers on the oval: https://www.facebook.com/levelcrossings/photos/?tab=album&album_id=1084549324953085

  • One of the major objections to the rail bridge option for the removal of the Balcombe Road level crossing is visual impact. I have reviewed the material on your website but have not been able to find any artist's impressions of the local area after construction and restoration has been completed. To properly inform local residents I believe it is essential that you publish these, including one that shows the rail bridge superimposed over an actual photo of the heritage-listed Mentone station building. If these have been prepared could you please provide me with a copy or a link to where they may be accessed?

    atapley asked about 3 years ago

    Hi there, thanks for your question. 

    At this stage, we are seeking feedback form the community on the preliminary design options. This means that the materials presented are indicative only. 

    Further design detail, including artist impressions of the visual impact of the project will become publicly available as soon as the relevant technical investigation have been completed, this includes the visual impact assessment.

  • What does “Height of rail bridge approximately 8 metres” mean? Is that 8 metres from ground level to the top of the train? Top of the infrastructure, or what? What will be the clearance for passing traffic? Why is the length of the works for the below-ground option so much longer than the above-ground option, (1200 v 800 metres)?

    Stephen C-S asked about 3 years ago

    Hi Stephen, thanks for your question. 

    The height of the rail bridge shown as 8 metres refers to ground to the rail line on the structure - there is a clearance of 5.4 metres under the bridge for traffic, which is required to meet the relevant standards. The length of the options are different because of the slope of the existing ground, sometimes it makes the trench longer, sometimes it makes the bridge longer. In this instance it makes the trench longer. 

    Thanks again for your question.


  • Will the Frankston line continue to carry freight? This obviously affects the dimensions of any bridge

    John Trevenen asked about 3 years ago

    Hi there, thanks for your question. the Frankston line will continue to operate in its current state, including freight. This will be a technical consideration when designing a rail bridge if this option is proceeded with.