Armadale Line in WA begins preparation for 18-month shutdown

Monica Gameng   |   May 24, 2023
Level crossing (cr: METRONET)

Preparation works for the 18-month shutdown of the Armadale Line in Western Australia is getting underway with the delivery of three new bus interchanges already being carried out. 

Construction on a 1.2-kilometre priority bus lanes and road modifications will also commence next month along the Albany Highway, Welshpool Road and Shepperton Road. 

The closure of the train line will facilitate the delivery of one of the largest public transport infrastructure projects in Perth. 

“This project is going to transform Armadale and deliver our community a new train station, and new opportunities for public open space with the removal of level crossings at Armadale Road, Church Avenue and Forrest Road. 

“I know disruptions will be particularly acute for the people in the Armadale electorate who often have the longest distance to travel, but we are working hard to make sure we have a temporary bus network in place that provides people with a smooth journey over the 18-month period,” Armadale MLA Tony Buti said. 

The transformation of the 129-year-old Armadale Line includes three major METRONET projects: Victoria Park-Canning Level Crossing Removal, Byford Rail Extension as well as the connection of the future Thornlie-Cockburn Link to the Thornlie Line. 

The overall upgrade to the Armadale Line will include the removal of 13 level crossings, construction of seven new stations and building about 5.5 kilometres of elevated rail. The transformation will also involve extending the rail line to Byford, providing access to public transport for the first time to the thousands of people in Perth’s south. 

Through the Victoria Park-Canning Level Crossing Removal Project, up to six hectares of new public space will be created for the community to enjoy. These public spaces are proposed to feature a range of amenities such as playgrounds, fitness zones, basketball courts, skate parks, new walking and cycling paths, public art, and activation spaces to be utilised for community activities and events. 

“This will be one of the biggest public transport infrastructure projects we have ever undertaken in our metro area and will deliver significant benefits to the community including the removal of 13 level crossings, construction of seven new stations, the addition of more than 5 kilometres of elevated rail and around six hectares of new public space. 

“We carefully considered the options for delivering these works, and an 18-month closure was the best way to get the job done in the shortest, safest, and most efficient way. 

“I am fully aware of the impact this project will have on regular passengers on the Armadale Line, as well as the surrounding communities, which is why significant work and effort is being undertaken now to make the closure smooth as possible,” Transport Minister Rita Saffioti said. 

During the shutdown period, new intelligent transport system technology will be installed along key arterial routes to assist with traffic flows. This includes Bluetooth receivers, CCTV cameras and variable message signs to provide real-time information on traffic conditions. 

The intelligent transport system technology is also going to be integrated with traffic signalling to provide better journey time reliability and movement for all bus services that will replace rail services. 

A dedicated incident response service that will focus on Shepperton Road and Albany Highway will be established as well during the 18-month closure. 

Several measures are being put in place during the entire shutdown period, including: 

  • Three new bus interchanges at Armadale, Victoria Park and Cannington 
  • Additional bus storage at the Causeway Bus Station to improve service performance 
  • Construction of 1.2 kilometres of priority bus lanes along Albany Highway, Welshpool Road and Shepperton Road 
  • Road modifications along Albany Highway to improve safety and traffic flow 
  • Installation of intelligent transport system technology including Bluetooth receivers, CCTV cameras and variable message signs 

“The new elevated Armadale Train Line is going to create significant opportunities for our Victoria Park community, including opening up new land for public open space. 

“While significant benefits will be delivered through this project and felt for generations to come, we also understand the disruption that lies ahead for people when this shutdown occurs, which is why we are investing a significant amount of money to put in place a temporary bus network that will continue to get people where they need to go,” Victoria Park MLA Hannah Beazley said. 

Up to 100 additional buses are going to be utilised to support the line shutdown. The Public Transport Authority is currently finalising the temporary bus routes for this period.

Travel patterns and research among Transperth patrons was analysed and it helped in the planning of a network of rail replacement bus services that will be made available on the Transperth website soon. 

“We’re building new bus interchanges, undertaking significant road works to deliver bus priority lanes and will be installing intelligent transport system technology that will help manage traffic and bus movements on key arterial routes. 

“The new technology being installed will integrate with traffic signalling to provide improved journey time reliability and movements for rail replacement bus services. 

“The Public Transport Authority has been carefully analysing the travel patterns of passengers and surveying Transperth patrons to develop the temporary bus routes that will support the shutdown, and those routes will be released in the coming months, to provide passengers with plenty of time to plan their journeys,” Minister Saffioti said. 

Ahead of the closure happening later this year, significant works are already being carried out to prepare for the construction of the new elevated rail. 

In addition, more than half of the 500 pre-cast L-beams required for the Victoria Park-Canning Level Crossing Removal Project have already been produced. The L-beams are part of the components of the precast concrete that forms part of the almost 4-kilometre overhead rail to be delivered through this METRONET project. 

“The community has called for the removal of level crossings and the McGowan Government is delivering with the removal of three level crossings in the electorate of Cannington alone. 

“It’s fantastic to see works progressing on the temporary Cannington Bus Interchange, which will provide people with access to the new bus networks we will have in place while the shutdown takes place. 

“This project is going to transform the rail corridor, but we know getting to that destination will create disruptions, which is why we will be working hard in the lead up to the shutdown, to make sure disruptions are minimised during the 18 months,” Cannington MLA Bill Johnston said. 

Development applications will soon be submitted to the City of Canning for the Cannington and Queens Park station projects as well as for the adjacent public spaces. Members of the community will be able to have their say on the projects through the Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage. 

Over the coming months, development applications for Beckenham, Armadale, and Byford will be submitted as well. 

Source: Government of Western Australia – Media Statements; Building for Tomorrow – Armadale Line Transformation; Government of Western Australia – Public Transport Authority; METRONET; Roads & Infrastructure Australia 

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Monica Gameng
As Felix's Marketing Assistant since 2015, Monica is responsible for researching and sharing new and progressing projects within the construction and mining sectors in Australia. It's no surprise that Monica has her finger on the pulse of Australian major projects given she has produced more than 1,000 posts. She truly is an industry expert.
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