Piling works and construction has begun at Murrumbeena and Carnegie stations in Melbourne’s south east as part of a project to remove nine dangerous and congested level crossings between Caulfield and Dandenong.

Minister for Public Transport Jacinta Allan said, “We’re getting on with the job of removing Melbourne’s worst level crossings.

“They’re not only dangerous, they cause congestion on our local roads and stop us running more trains on our busiest train line.”

The first of two large piling rigs, each weighing about 140 tonnes, have been delivered to site at Murrumbeena Station.

The piling rigs – with masts up to 30m tall – will install more than 1000 piles in the ground along the rail corridor in preparation for the arrival of the gantry cranes in late 2016.

The gantry cranes will take shape to install 2,500 locally-manufactured segments of the new modern elevated line by moving back and forth in the air. This will allow for less disruption to commuters with trains being able to keep running underneath.

The stations will close after the last train on Sunday 28 August 2016 and reopen in time for the first train on Monday 26 September 2016 after the construction of temporary stations. The temporary stations will remain open while construction is underway before the new stations are completed in 2018.

This temporary closure will ensure piling and station works take place safely, and will minimise later disruption for local commuters, traders and residents over the project’s construction.

“Local residents will see some short term construction impacts but will see new stations for commuters, open spaces for everyone to enjoy and less congestion on our roads,” Ms Allan said.

Cranbourne and Pakenham line trains will continue to run while the stations are closed. Commuters who use Murrumbeena and Carnegie stations will be able to access train replacement bus services from a number of stops during the station closures.

“While works are underway, we’re reminding locals that local businesses are open and encouraging the workforce to eat, shop and play at all of our wonderful local stores,” Member for Oakleigh Steve Dimopoulos said.

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