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Victoria’s Level Crossing Removal Project will see the removal of 50 congested level crossings across Melbourne nominated by the Victorian Government, over the next eight years.
The Level Crossing Removal Authority (LXRA) is responsible for all aspects of the project including planning and development, stakeholder engagement, procurement, through to construction and delivery. Construction has started or has been completed at many level crossings, with planning and consultation under way for the delivery of future project sites.
EPA has been working with LXRA since May 2015 to support the delivery of level crossing removals in a manner that balances good environmental and social outcomes during construction with the long-term benefits of the projects.
As Victoria’s environmental regulator, EPA has provided LXRA with advice on a range of issues including contaminated soil management, air and groundwater quality monitoring and best-practice noise-mitigation measures.
Level crossing removal works are under way at many sites, including along the Pakenham rail line between Caulfield and Dandenong.
People in close proximity to these sites may experience the following impacts from significant works:
|Type of works
||Potential impacts on community
Piling, excavation, concreting, column installation, site establishment, soil movement
- Noise from power generators, which may be experienced when close to work sites
- Drilling and excavation noise
- Noise from vehicle movements
- General construction noise
- Dust from vehicle movements and building materials
There will be minimal impact from concrete dust, as most concrete arrives at the work sites premixed.
- Increased truck movements from spoil movement, transport of materials to work sites and removal of waste
Notices about specific works are published on LXRA’s website. You can also obtain further information by calling LXRA on 1800 762 667.
With so many level crossing removals over the coming years, there will be localised impacts and inconveniences for residents and businesses, including from noise and dust.
EPA’s Noise control guidelines (publication 1254) outline the expectations of proponents (including LXRA and its contractors) to identify, plan and act to address noise impacts during construction.
The guidelines are not mandatory or enforceable by law but provide LXRA and its contractors with guidance on best-practice measures to mitigate noise impacts. EPA has worked closely with LXRA to understand what noise impacts may be felt and how that noise can be avoided or mitigated.
Key aspects of the guidelines relevant to LXRA include the following:
- Noise should be inaudible within a habitable room of any residential premises from 10pm to 7am, Monday to Sunday.
- Affected premises should be notified of unavoidable works, their duration and times of occurrence.
What are unavoidable works?
Unavoidable works are ones that cannot practicably meet EPA’s guidelines because the work involves continuous work — such as a concrete pour — or would otherwise pose an unacceptable risk to life or property, or risk a major traffic hazard.
Some unavoidable nighttime works will be required during level crossing removals to enable safe construction and minimise disruption to the transport system.
Where noisy works are unavoidable, LXRA is expected to demonstrate that all reasonable efforts have been made to minimise the impact of the noise on people’s rest and recreation. In addition, LXRA has entered into a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with EPA to share information about its projects and for EPA to advise the authority on noise mitigation.
EPA’s Environmental guidelines for major construction sites (publication 480) also provides LXRA and its contractors with advice on how to implement sound practices that minimise environmental impacts and eliminate nuisance to residents.
Air quality (including dust)
Dust is a common air pollutant and anticipated to be one of several community impacts from the LXRA project. Air quality in Victoria is protected by two state environment protection policies, or SEPPs, which are adopted by government to protect Victoria’s air environment.
LXRA is required to comply with the following SEPPs:
The SEPPs establish a regulatory framework for managing emissions into the air environment in Victoria from all sources of air pollutants, including dust.
To monitor dust levels close to the project area, LXRA is using dust deposition monitors. These are installed along the work site alignment to monitor dust from construction activities.
Waste and soil from demolition and construction work
LXRA must manage its waste in accordance with Victoria’s environment laws.
Wastes generated from commercial or industrial sources that are potentially hazardous to humans or the environment require a higher level of control and are called prescribed industrial wastes (PIW). Material classified as PIW must be appropriately transported to landfill and accompanied by the relevant documentation, in accordance with the Environment Protection (Industrial Waste Resource) Regulations 2009.
The Regulations require PIW to be transported in a vehicle with an EPA permit and a waste transport certificate accompanying the load. PIW can only be transported to EPA-licensed facilities. It is the responsibility of the waste producer, transporter and receiver to ensure that a waste transport certificate is completed for each consignment of PIW.
Where excess soil is generated, it must either be disposed of or reused in accordance with the Regulations and the State Environment Protection Policy (Prevention and Management of Contamination of Land) 2002.
If you have a question or concern about noise, dust, waste or other environmental impacts, please contact LXRA on 1800 762 667 or visit www.levelcrossings.vic.gov.au.
LXRA can also answer general questions about level crossing removals in your area.
You can also contact EPA for general information, or to make a report, about noise, dust or other environmental impacts by calling 1300 EPA VIC (1300 372 842).