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Metro Tunnel

Western tunnel entrance

The western tunnel entrance will enable the Sunbury line to peel off from the existing rail corridor near South Kensington station, and travel via the Metro Tunnel to join up with the Pakenham / Cranbourne line.

What you told us

Drawing on the ideas, expertise and opinions of stakeholders and the community is vital as planning for the Metro Tunnel continues.

A comprehensive program of public engagement and consultation has been underway since early 2015, and feedback has informed planning documentation and project designs.

Key western tunnel entrance feedback topics included:

  • The importance of managing impacts on traffic and parking on local streets.
  • The importance of minimising impacts on JJ Holland Park and other well utilised community facilities.
  • Feedback noted concerns about the proposed tunnel entrance location being too close to local homes. This feedback has been considered in the development of Options A and B.
  • Longer term urban design changes to the local area, including the height and design of the retaining wall or noise walls, if required.
  • Maintaining business park access for larger vehicles.

Western tunnel entrance location and features

The western tunnel entrance for the Metro Tunnel is proposed to be located alongside the northern side of the existing rail corridor near South Kensington station. A 'decline structure,' or descending tracks, will be built so that trains can enter the new Metro Tunnel.

From the western tunnel entrance, the tunnels will pass under Moonee Ponds Creek and CityLink before connecting to the new underground station at Arden.

In late 2015 and early 2016, the Melbourne Metro Rail Authority (MMRA) sought community feedback through a range of mediums, including information sessions, meetings and our 'yoursay' online engagement portal. As a result of feedback received, and as part of our efforts to reduce potential impacts, MMRA has developed two options for the location of the tunnel entrance, each with differing impacts.

The two options 'Option A' and 'Option B' - are being assessed as part of the Metro Tunnel Environment Effects Statement (EES).

Western tunnel entrance option A

Western Tunnel Entrance Option A

In Option A, the tunnel entrance is proposed to be constructed in the rail corridor near the intersection of Childers Street and Ormond Street just to the west of the South Kensington subway.

This option requires a shorter decline structure and track work in the rail corridor between Kensington Road and the tunnel entrance.

Western tunnel entrance option B

Western Tunnel Entrance Option B 

In Option B, the tunnel entrance is located in the rail corridor further west along Childers Street approximately halfway between the station entrance and the Bill Vanina pavilion. The location of the tunnel entrance has moved slightly further east as a result of further design assessment undertaken since this Option was first presented to the community.

This option involves constructing a longer decline structure, track work either side of Kensington Road and the construction of a new rail bridge over Kensington Road.

Comparison between Option A and Option B

Impact Option A Option B
Property acquisition Permanent acquisition of nine residential and thirteen commercial properties Permanent acquisition of one residential property
  • Temporary closure of Childers Street, between Kensington Road and Tennyson Street during construction
  • Construction of a permanent retaining wall along Childers Street to the portal entrance
  • Temporary changes to traffic access and movements along Childers Street, Ormond Street, Altona Street and Tennyson Street and a temporary access ramp arrangement to McClure Road
  • Temporary closure of Childers Street, between Kensington Road and Ormond Street during construction
  • Construction of a permanent retaining wall along Childers Street to the portal entrance
  • Temporary changes to traffic access and movements along Childers Street and Tennyson Street

Temporary loss of car parking along Childers Street

Temporary loss of car parking along Childers Street

Pedestrians and cyclists

Upgraded shared use path in JJ Holland Park

Upgraded shared use path in JJ Holland Park
Rail corridor 

Extensive and more complex track and civil work in the rail corridor east of Kensington Road

  • Extensive track work both east and west of Kensington Road
  • Construction of new rail bridge over Kensington Road
Intake substation Option to locate an intake substation within the Lloyd Street Business Estate No intake substation located within the Lloyd Street Business Estate
  • Noise and vibration impacts associated with a major construction site
  • More rail service disruptions required
  • Noise and vibration impacts associated with a major construction site
  • Less rail service disruptions
Cost Less expensive option More expensive option

The intake substation (ISS) will provide power supply to the new Metro Tunnel service. The ISS will house electrical equipment including transformers, where incoming power supply voltage will be stepped to a suitable voltage prior to feeding to the new twin tunnels and underground train stations. If western tunnel entrance Option A is selected, one of the locations being considered for the ISS is within the Lloyd Street Business Estate. If Option B is selected, the ISS will not be located within the vicinity of the western tunnel entrance.

It is important to note the project designs are a concept only. The contractor appointed for construction will be responsible for developing the detailed project design. This means that the eventual design solution may differ from what is presented as part of the Metro Tunnel EES. This is standard on all major construction projects.

Frequently asked questions

Will South Kensington station be included in the Metro Tunnel?

Upgrades to South Kensington station are not within the scope of the Metro Tunnel. However, improvements to the station will be considered as part of ongoing upgrades across the network over the coming decade.

The Metro Tunnel will connect the Sunbury and Cranbourne / Pakenham lines for the first time, creating a new end-to-end line through the city. While the new twin tunnels won't connect to South Kensington station, the Werribee line will benefit from the additional capacity and reliability created by the project.

When the Metro Tunnel starts operating by 2026, a new cross-city line will be running between Werribee and Sandringham, stopping at South Kensington station. This will allow more train services to operate through South Kensington station, a benefit for all local residents travelling by train.

What streets are proposed for truck movements in this area during construction?

The construction of the western tunnel entrance is expected to affect traffic on Childers, Ormond, Tennyson and Altona Streets, Bakehouse Road and McLennan Drive during different stages of construction, with some changes to lanes as well as temporary closures.

Construction teams will seek to move trucks carrying excavated material away from construction sites and onto the arterial road network as quickly and efficiently as possible.

In addition to community and key stakeholder consultation, traffic impact assessments are being carried out during the planning process to identify how road and traffic impacts can be reduced and best managed.

How will JJ Holland Park be impacted by the Metro Tunnel?

The Metro Tunnel is currently in the planning and development phase and any impact to surrounding parklands is being determined as part of the detailed planning process. Recognising that JJ Holland Park is highly valued by the community and the adjoining residential neighbourhood, the project team has worked to avoid having any impact on the park itself.

JJ Holland Park will remain open throughout the Metro Tunnel build. None of the parkland will be acquired, but parking on Childers Street will likely be affected.

More information

Did you know?

The rail line to Williamstown was the first to be constructed by the Victorian Railways Department and opened in 1859. The heritage rail bridge over the Saltwater (now Maribyrnong) River was built in 1858 and retains the original massive bluestone buttresses, while the newer span of the bridge was installed in 1911.