Melbourne’s Metro Tunnel team is finalising architectural elements for the five new stations, with several elements tested being made locally, including light fittings, wall cladding, architectural brackets and ceiling fixtures – as part of a $45 million investment in local manufacturing.
The Melbourne-made light fittings were created by ISM Objects, a lighting design company based in Mentone.
Minister for transport and infrastructure Jacinta Allan said, “Whether it’s local businesses or thousands of Victorians working around the clock, the Metro Tunnel is being built, designed and made in Victoria, creating jobs and supporting businesses.”
“As the stations take shape, test trains are running at line speed deep beneath Melbourne – bringing us closer to the opening of the Metro Tunnel in 2025, a year ahead of schedule.”
The testing is conducted at a Footscray warehouse, a former flower market, and houses a mock train station with architectural elements from each of the underground stations – offering an insight into how the finished stations will look when they open a year ahead of schedule in 2025.
For three years teams of architects, designers and engineers have prototyped and tested everything from ticket gates to floor finishes inside the warehouse, ensuring everything has been designed and crafted to the highest standards.
Some of the proven design elements have already been installed across the stations, including light fittings, ceiling systems and platform screen doors (PSDs) – a first for the Victorian rail network.
The warehouse includes a mock station concourse, ticket gates, seating, customer help points, PSDs, signature light fittings and a replica of the cathedral-like arched ceilings at the two new CBD stations.
At the same time, testing inside the tunnels is gathering pace, with trains reaching their full speed just weeks after the first test trains entered the twin tunnels.
The project will connect the busy Sunbury and Cranbourne/Pakenham lines via a new tunnel under the city, creating an end-to-end rail line from the north-west to the south-east, freeing up space in the City Loop to run more trains more often to growing suburbs like Werribee, Sunbury and Frankston.