Plans for a road bridge to replace the Aviation Road level crossing at Laverton were this week revealed by the state government, despite community concerns about it being “an eyesore”.
It comes just three weeks after Hobsons Bay council called for community input over the Level Crossing Removal Authority’s two preferred options: a road bridge over the rail lines or lowering Aviation Road under the lines.
At its February 13 meeting the council passed a resolution to seek feedback from commuters and residents from Altona Meadows, Laverton, Seabrook and beyond.
However, Altona MP Jill Hennessy on Friday announced that work would start this year on a road bridge over the current crossing, walking and cycling paths, and a pedestrian underpass to Aircraft station.
Ward councillor Colleen Gates said the council supported the removal of the level crossing after 20 years of lobbying but that there were concerns about a road bridge.
“Our community has already expressed concerns that a road bridge will have an impact to the visual amenity of the area and therefore we remain very hopeful that the Level Crossing Removal Authority (LXRA) will place particular focus on getting the aesthetic appeal and design elements right,” she said.
LXRA project director Tony Hedley said more than 180 people, including residents abutting the rail line, had been consulted.
“Council was consulted as a key stakeholder and we will continue to work with them as part of this process,” he said.
Ms Hennessy said the road bridge had been chosen after extensive technical investigations had revealed difficult environmental conditions such as hard basalt rock and a high water table.
“This project will open up Laverton and provide the community with safer and more accessible crossing options.”
Community drop-in sessions to provide feedback on the design will be held at Laverton Community Hub, 95-105 Railway Avenue, Laverton on March 17 from 10am-noon and March 24 from 2-4pm.