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Metro Tunnel

Building Parkville station

Work is underway on Grattan Street to build Parkville Station.

A 30-metre deep station box will be excavated using a construction method called the 'bottom up' approach. This approach involves excavating the box down to its maximum depth, construction and fit out of the station, followed by the installation of mechanical and electrical equipment required to operate the station. The road surface is then reinstated over the top once the station is complete.

Construction activities

Construction of Parkville Station will take around five years. Key construction activities include:

  • Preparatory works, including tree protection and removal and the relocation of underground services such as telecommunications, water, sewer, gas and electricity.
  • Road closures and site establishment.
  • Piling and excavation of the station box and tunnels.
  • Structural works and entrance connections.
  • Tunnel boring machine pull-through and retrieval.
  • Architectural, mechanical and electrical fit out.
  • Track works and the installation of signalling, safety and communications systems.
  • Site remediation including landscaping and public realm works.
  • New road layout.

Environmental Performance Requirements (EPRs) have been developed in consultation with key stakeholders throughout the planning process to avoid, reduce or manage construction impacts in Parkville. Find out more about how we are managing construction impacts across the project.

Parkville construction map

Piling works

Before excavation can commence, we need to install approximately 500 piles around Grattan Street, between Royal Parade and Leicester Street, to support the structure and enable workers to safely carry out excavation underground.

Break back process

As the piles are constructed, we will be using an innovative new method to break back the piles.

The method involves the use of an expanding mortar to create pressure and generate a perfectly horizontal cut, so the top layer of concrete can be easily removed by a crane.

This removes the need to use jack hammers and excavators in the pile break back process, reducing the noise, dust and vibration impacts on the surrounding environment, including sensitive research equipment, hospital wards, teaching spaces and residential receivers.

Following the removal of the top layer of concrete, a temporary concrete capping beam is cast on top of completed piles to prevent any lateral displacement during subsequent excavation works.

Piling works started in May 2018 and are expected to be completed by November 2018.

Truck movements

  • Piling rigs will require approximately five truck movements per hour.
  • Trucks will enter and exist the site via Barry, Berkeley or Grattan (eastern end) streets
  • A truck waiting bay will be located in Barry Street and the former City Ford site and trucks will be called onto site when required.
  • All trucks will be fitted with broadband beepers and their loads covered when leaving site.

For more information, see the Parkville Station piling works page or the Piling fact sheet (PDF, 990.9 KB).


As piling nears completion, excavation of the station box will begin.

A construction method called ‘bottom up’ will be used, which involves excavating the box down to its maximum depth, construction and fit out of the box, followed by the installation of mechanical and electrical equipment required to operate the station.

The excavated space will be up to 32 metres below ground and around 270 metres long.

Excavation is expected to start in December 2018 and continue until December 2019.

A temporary deck will be installed over the work site to minimise noise and dust impacts while excavation is carried out underneath.

The excavation will take place in three stages:

Stage 1: December 2018 to March 2019

  • Open excavation and installation of deck and gantry cranes.
  • During this stage, the site will be excavated down to a depth of approximately three metres to install the deck. The deck will be installed over the site to minimise noise and dust impacts while excavation continues underneath.

Stage 2: March 2019 to July 2019

  • Closed excavation
  • Trucks will enter the site and travel down a ramp to an excavator where they will be loaded with excavated soil and rock. Sliding doors will open when the trucks enter and then close behind to minimise noise and dust impacts during this stage of excavation
  • Designated clean and dirty zones will ensure excavated material is not transferred onto local roads.

Stage 3: July 2019 to December 2019

  • Once the excavation reaches a depth of 15 metres, it will be too deep for trucks to enter and exit via the ramp
  • Two small acoustic enclosures will be installed to allow trucks to drive in and be loaded with the excavated soil and rock from gantry cranes.
  • The gantry cranes will lift mucking buckets filled with excavated material out of access holes in the deck and into acoustic enclosures to be loaded into waiting trucks. The trucks will be fully enclosed by sealed doors and roof panels when the material is released to minimise noise and dust.

Demolition of City Ford site

Demolition of the City Ford site on the corner of Elizabeth and Pelham streets has commenced and will continue until mid-December 2018.

The site will be used as a construction laydown and holding area for trucks for the Parkville and State Library stations.

The dedicated holding area reduces the time trucks need to spend idle on local roads while waiting to access the Grattan Street and State Library work sites.

The existing buildings will be demolished and the site will be used to accommodate truck parking and a laydown area for other construction equipment and materials. Demolition works will involve excavators, bob-cats and other machinery.

Approximately five trucks per day will be required to remove material from the site during demolition works. Trucks will enter and exit the site using Elizabeth and Berkeley streets.

There will be intermittent periods of high level noise associated with hard demolition works. It is expected that approximately 40 non-consecutive days of hard demolition will be required.

During demolition, it is expected there will be no vibration impacts as buildings will be demolished to ground level only. There will be no excavation activity resulting in exposed earth during these works.

Dust will be managed on site with the use of hoses to wash down trucks and surfaces. Any open stockpiles will be covered. All truck loads will be covered when leaving site.

Access for pedestrians and cyclists will be maintained around the work site, however at times localised diversions will be in place. For the safety of pedestrians, the footpath on the west side of Berkeley Street will be temporarily closed at times. Pedestrians will be directed to use the footpath on the east side of Berkeley Street. Signage and traffic controllers will be in place to direct pedestrians and cyclists.

Two car parking spaces on the western side of Berkeley Street will be occupied during demolition.

There will be no changes to public transport during demolition works. Trams and buses will continue to run as normal.

During demolition works, hazardous materials such as asbestos will need to be removed. It is not unusual or unexpected to find these materials in older buildings, such as the City Ford site.Licensed asbestos contractors will be engaged to ensure the safe removal of any hazardous material and maintain the safety of workers and the community.

Heritage removals

Applications for the removal of a number of heritage listed items were lodged early in 2018 with Heritage Victoria. This was to protect the sensitivities and infrastructure of heritage listed items in close proximity to the Parkville Station construction site.

Permits were received in mid 2018 to remove the following infrastructure to enable piling and excavation of the Parkville Station to commence:

  • Bluestone kerb and channel at the intersection of Grattan Street and Royal Parade. Also included in this work will be the removal of the corner post, fence and bluestone wall from within University of Melbourne land
  • Existing vegetation within Gatekeeper’s Cottage, heritage registered land
  • University of Melbourne’s main gates, pillars and a portion of the fence (Gate 10).

The removal and storage of all heritage listed items was overseen by a Heritage Victoria approved Heritage Conservation Consultant and carried out by a suitably qualified heritage removal specialist.

All heritage listed items will be returned and reinstated at the completion of the Metro Tunnel construction. Heritage interpretation information will be installed on the fencing, in line with Heritage Victoria permit requirements.

Site establishment activities

Activities to establish the site for piling and excavation of the station box include:

  • Installation of pedestrian ramps in Barry, Berkeley and Grattan streets to assist with pedestrian access.
  • Installation of covered pedestrian walkways and six metre timber hoardings along the north and south side of the site in order separate site activities and pedestrian movements
  • Installation of 2.4 metre high timber hoarding around the site perimeter
  • Removal of heritage listed assets.
  • Installation of worksite drainage.
  • Non-destructive drilling to locate services and soil sampling along Grattan Street, within the work site.
  • Removal of street furniture and above ground assets.
  • Installation of site facilities in Barry Street.
  • Installation of an electrical kiosk substation to supply power to the site during construction.
  • Completing installation of groundwater monitoring wells in Royal Parade, Pelham Street, Lincoln Square North, Berkeley Street, University of Melbourne’s Gate 10.
  • Tree removal to prepare the site for construction. Trees will be removed from within the site boundary. Fauna inspections have been undertaken and a qualified and experienced fauna handler will be on site for all tree removals.
  • Preparation of a hardstand for piling rigs which involves excavators to place crushed rock and rollers to compact the ground.