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Extensive works have been completed on the Pakenham train line to support the introduction of high capacity trains (HCT).
The larger, faster trains will operate along the local line from mid-2019 in a bid to improve travel time and commuter comfort.
To support the added weight, the Level Crossing Removal Authority undertook intensive works involving the laying of 63 kilometres of new cabling, wiring, pipes and tracks, along the railway during July to “bring the line up to scratch”.
The “critical” works saw buses replace local train services for several days.
Level Crossing Removal Authority Project director Brett Summers said locally, a lot of work was able to be achieved during a short period of time.
“This has been a very intensive period of works and a highly successful one – we achieved everything we needed to do and more,” Mr Summers said.
“If you took every piece of new cable, wiring and new equipment we put in and laid them end to end, it adds up to about 63 kilometres – that’s the same distance as from Melbourne to Pakenham.”
Other South East Melbourne train lines have been subject to a number of rail upgrades in the past month.
According to the authority, “much-needed” track works were also carried out in Dandenong’s east to help improve reliability around the point where trains from Cranbourne and Pakenham merge into a single line.
Berwick train station was also subject to two four-metre platform extensions to allow for the longer HCTs.
Workers also installed new lighting and fencing at the station, as well as ramps to improved accessibility for disabled passengers.
Mr Summers thanked commuters for their patience during the disruption.
Commuters can stay up-to-date with all the works at: www.levelcrossings.vic.gov.au/

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