Victoria Minister for Public Transport Terry Mulder
Lifts To Be Installed At Mitcham And Springvale Stations
Victor P Taffa
Minister for Public Transport Terry Mulder was today joined by Member for Mitcham Dee Ryall to announce that lifts will be installed at Springvale and Mitcham railway stations as part of the Victorian Coalition Government’s removal of three level crossings.
Visiting Mitcham station today, Mr. Mulder said while the access ramps and stairs included in the projects complied with the requirements of the Disability Discrimination Act, there was strong community support for lifts at both stations.
“Springvale and Mitcham stations will be equipped with two lifts, one per platform. They will be located near the ramp and stair access points, within the ticketed area.” Mr. Mulder said.
“While we planned for the provision of lifts at Mitcham and Springvale from the start, due to their cost and their tendency to be a target for vandals, we wanted to discuss access options with the community before making any final decisions.”
“In May 2011, I set up the Station User Panel to provide advice to the Coalition Government on how railway station development and redevelopment projects could better reflect the expectations of users and communities.”
“I asked for this work to be undertaken to ensure that all members of our community could reasonably access our public transport system. Due to the previous Labor government’s botched, lift-only stations passengers were stranded when the lifts broke down.”
“Unlike Labor’s lifts at Laverton and Footscray stations these new lifts will be large enough to accommodate ambulance stretchers. We are also looking into sourcing a back-up power supply so that the lifts run independent of the station power supply.”
“Since the Coalition came to Government, all of our new railway stations include ramps to make it easier for passengers to move through the station precinct and ensure emergency access is available at all times.” Mr. Mulder said.
Ms. Ryall said she had spoken with many residents as well as the Mitcham Residents Association about the provision of a lift at Mitcham station.
“In Mitcham, the age demographics of the community and the length of the ramps mean that there are many users who would have their access to the railway station inhibited without lifts being installed.” Ms. Ryall said.
“People who perhaps cannot walk for any significant distance, due to their age, disability or health reasons will welcome this announcement.”
“I appreciate the comments and feedback provided by the community and station patrons.”
“The former State Labor Government, who only installed lifts and stairs at new stations, found that on many occasions passengers were being trapped at railway stations when the lifts broke down or were vandalised.”
“I congratulate Mr. Mulder for the action being taken to remove the Mitcham and Rooks Roads level crossings and for building the new Premium station at Mitcham.” Ms. Ryall said.
Works are progressing well at both sites with excavation of the Mitcham Road underpass in full swing. More than 45,000 tonnes of earth has already been removed from the site and 13 beams already in place.
At Mitcham Road alone, about 16,000 vehicles pass through the level crossing each day, together with more than 200 trains. The boom gates on Mitcham Road are down for approximately 27 minutes each hour during the morning peak.
“The removal of the level crossing on Mitcham Road will significantly ease congestion at this location when completed.” Mr. Mulder said.
“The biggest benefit of these works is to the thousands of motorists, cyclists, buses and pedestrians who have to negotiate the Mitcham Road and Rooks Road crossing every day.”
“When complete, the Coalition Government’s works will remove the dangerous rail crossings at Mitcham Road, Rooks Road and Springvale Road, and include Premium stations staffed from the first to last train and Protective Services Officers from 6pm until the last train.”
Local Mitcham residents Janice and Fred Jago thanked Mr. Mulder and Ms. Ryall and said this was a brilliant outcome.
“On behalf of all people with disabilities or walking problems, the access provided will be fantastic for us.” Mrs. Jago said.
The level crossing removals will be completed in late 2014 with the lifts being funded through the current budget of each project.
Mitcham and Springvale stations will open in early 2014 with the lifts operational by mid-2014.
Information About Road Closures:
Mitcham Road will be closed at the level crossing to through traffic for one week, from 7.30pm on Friday 20 September and will reopen early on Saturday morning 28 September.
The road needs to be closed to construct the Mitcham Road bridge deck that will cross over the new rail lines.
Drivers wanting to use Mitcham Road should seek alternative routes as some delays can be expected on the surrounding road network. Alternate north-south routes include Springvale Road, Nunawading.
Springvale Road, Springvale, will be closed at the level crossing from 8pm on Friday 20 September and reopen at 6am on Monday 30 September. The closure will allow construction of the bridge deck that will cross over the top of the new rail lines.
Drivers wanting to travel between the north and south can use Westall Road.
Some modifications will be made to traffic signals and intersections along the detour route to improve traffic flow during the closures. Drivers can expect some delays and should allow some additional time for their journey.
For information on how the closures affect trains and buses, please call 1800 800 007 or visit www.ptv.vic.gov.au