Works to reopen the troublesome Lydiard Street level crossing are set to begin on Thursday with 'investigative non-destructive digging' to take place.
The works will take place over two days, from 7am to 5pm each day, and are the first step in the $10.5 million project to open the important thoroughfare that was announced in May.
Signalling infrastructure and underground services under the road surface will be located and identified using hydro-excavation equipment.
These works will then allow planning to progress on the temporary installation of boom gates connected to the existing manual signalling system which would have the road open in September or October this year.
The permanent solution of boom gates connected to the modern, automated signalling system is expected to be in place by mid-2022.
While a final design for the upgraded crossing is under development, an application has been submitted to Heritage Victoria to work on the temporary solution.
The state government said once the final design for the crossing has been completed and approved, it will be shared with the community ahead of works getting underway.
While works take place, the level crossing will remain closed to traffic but pedestrians will be able to cross and train services will continue.
Minister for Roads, Road Safety and Public Transport Ben Carroll said the works would open Lydiard Street as quickly and as safely as possible.
"These works represent a small but significant step towards reopening Lydiard Street and delivering a safer rail crossing that meets modern standards," he said.
Member for Wendouree Juliana Addison said the works were an important first step.
"These works at Lydiard Street form an important part of the planning process as we continue to work on both short and long-term solutions to reopen the crossing," she said.
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