Final designs for Melbourne’s five new underground train stations have been revealed as part of the Metro Tunnel project.
The rail project is due to be completed in 2025, with the new North Melbourne, Parkville, State Library, Town Hall and Anzac stations to take three busy train lines out of the congested City Loop.
“There’s a special and unique opportunity to create new landmarks with these five new underground stations,” Public Transport Minister Jacinta Allan said on Wednesday.
“In cities around the world they are grand places.”
She said they would become “meeting places” instead of just train stations.
The site-specific designs respond to the histories and local character of each location. They add bike racks, trees, and widen footpaths.
North Melbourne Station
North Melbourne Station’s brick structure with arched entrance will reflect the area’s industrial heritage. Skylights will filter natural light onto the platforms and concourse.
The existing North Melbourne Station will be renamed West Melbourne.
Parkville was designed to be a “grand promenade” to connect the area’s health, research and education institutions.
The main entrance at Grattan Street, at Melbourne University, features a 50-metre long glass canopy to flood natural light onto the concourse and offer commuters a view of the trees.
It will add 3500 square metres of public space through the reconfiguration of roads, with just one lane of traffic in each direction on Grattan Street.
State Library, on the northern end of Swanston Street, will create new meeting places through “grand entrances” and redesigned laneways.
Newly elected Lord Mayor Sally Capp said it was her favourite of the station designs because of its “cantilever ceilings, which reflect back on the history of the State Library.”
It will be connected to Melbourne Central Station to allow easy interchange between Metro Tunnel and City Loop services.
Franklin Street will become a pedestrian promenade with reduced traffic speed, while A’Beckett Street will be permanently closed to through traffic between Stewart and Swanston streets.
The station will create 3500 square metres of new public space from reconfigured road space. The number of trees in the precinct will increase 50 per cent.
Town Hall station – at the southern end of Swanston Street with an underground passenger connection to Federation Square – will add shops, cafes and outdoor dining.
Existing laneways at Cocker Alley and Scott Alley will be revitalised and extended, the government said.
Seating will be added with views of St Paul’s Cathedral and Town Hall.
Anzac station at Domain has been designed as a “pavilion in the park”, with a canopy reaching from below ground to add natural light.
It will create a direct train and tram interchange, and Ms Allan said a pedestrian underpass beneath St Kilda Road will enhance safety.
The number of trees impacted at Anzac has been reduced from 224 to 170, while Albert Road Reserve will be expanded as a community park.
Architects Hassell, Weston Williamson and Rogers Stirk Harbour and Partners collaborated on the designs.
Ms Capp said City of Melbourne would continue working with the state government to deliver the “world-leading project”.
“These stations will be bold and exciting additions to the Melbourne landscape, enhancing the experience of the city’s commuters.”
It will be completed by 2025, a year ahead of the original schedule.
“We need to bring extra capacity into our metropolitan train system. We need to be able to run more trains in and out of the city from the suburbs and the regions,” Ms Allan said.
– with AAP