Sort of loosely associated with the whole Skyrail thing has been some upgrades and changes to Oakleigh train station. Last year the station changed from three rail lines to two – although most people believe that what really needs to be done is to upgrade the entire Dandenong line to four lines. The old platform one is fenced off and passengers now use the island platform only for inbound trains, with access via the pokey tunnel with ramps that are apparently not compliant with modern standards. There’s a 74 page “Oakleigh Activity Centre Transport Interchange” review document that can be hunted up and found somewhere on the City of Monash’s website – I found it once and downloaded it, my search-fu is failing me now.

According to either that document or another, the Djerring trail “Shared Use Path” will supposedly be extended past the old platform one on the south side of the station … in the fullness of time … until then, there’s still a 300m gap in what everyone keeps parroting as the “Continuous offroad bike path from Caulfield to Yarraman.” Cyclists on the Djerring trail come out from under Warrigal road and are required to get off, walk down to the station underpass, walk through the underpass and up the ramp on the other side, walk across the gravel and mud to the car park, then ride through the station car park before rejoining the trail around behind the Oakleigh Central shops. There’s a $495 fine if you ride on the footpath section, and the risk of being driven over in the car park, but according to the bureaucracy this counts as a bike path…

Earlier this week there were surveyors walking around the station taking measurements of the ramps and surrounds, today we found that PTV is planning on closing part of the station car park for a year, starting this Friday! Fairly typical, they must have known for weeks or months when they would start works, but the notice to the public goes out at the last possible minute:

Oakleigh Station will be affected by temporary long-term car space closures from Friday 9 August 2019 to August 2020, due to works.

Approximately 20 car spaces in the Portman Street eastern car park near the station building will be unavailable during this time.

The notice says it was published online two days ago, [2019-08-05 Mon] on the PTV website. As far as I can tell there’s no sign or notice at the station itself! Fingers crossed that the year’s closures will include the provision of safe access to the Djerring trail at the end of the car park, but given their behaviour over the 2+ years of Skyrail construction, I won’t be holding my breath…

2019-08-08T12.23.43.0369_samsung
Car park closed for a year, Djerring trail remains open!

OK, well forgive my cynicism but experience has shown that the railway works nearly always took the easy way out and closed off everything, then put in the useless “Use other footpath” signs. Looks as though this time they’ll let people through to the bike track.

Now for a years’ worth of disruptions and building works in the station and surrounds, with, I suspect, a number of closures of the underpass on short notice.