Photos from ten years ago: October 2012

Another instalment in my photos from ten years ago series – this time it is October 2012.

Building it up, tear it down

We start off in the Melbourne CBD, where the Emporium Melbourne shopping centre was emerging inside the gutted facade of Myer’s Lonsdale Street store.

Looking east over the construction site

The complex opened a few years later in April 2014.

Over at Royal Park the old Royal Children’s Hospital was being demolished.

Northern side of the 'H' block all done

Opening up a view towards the CBD.

Melbourne CBD skyline viewed from the demolition site

The expansion of Royal Park onto the site was completed by December 2014.

And out in Truganina I photographed the trashed gatehouse at the abandoned Truganina Munitions Reserve on Palmers Road.

Gatehouse at the abandoned Truganina Munitions Reserve on Palmers Road

Abandoned for years, it eventually bulldozed in 2020 so the road could be widened.

Building Regional Rail Link

In October 2012 work on the Regional Rail Link was well underway, with the west side of Sunshine station cleared to make room for two new V/Line platforms.

Siemens on the down at Sunshine, passing Regional Rail Link works

The car park off Irving Street at Footscray station was also closed for good, to make way for two new suburban platforms.

Irving Street car park at Footscray closed for good - site of the future suburban platforms

Work to widen the rail corridor towards Middle Footscray about to begin.

Siemens train on the up at Footscray, passing Regional Rail Link works

And out in the back blocks of Truganina a number of minor roads were about to be permanently closed, so that work on the new Regional Rail Link route between Deer Park and Werribee could start.

Woods Road permanently closed to traffic where the RRL alignment crosses it

The new platforms at Footscray were first to open in January 2014, followed by the new platforms at Sunshine in April 2014, the new tracks between South Kensington and Sunshine in July 2014, and finally the new route via Tarneit in June 2015.

Myki replaces Metcard

The Metcard magstripe ticketing system was scheduled to be switched off at the end of December 2012, so the switch to Myki message was everywhere, including the soon to be removed ticket machines onboard trams.

'Metcard cannot be used from 29th December 2012' message on a MVM1 ticket machine onboard a tram

At Flagstaff station the Metcard barriers were being replaced by new Myki gates.

Replacing Metcard barriers at Flagstaff with permanent Myki gates

Allowing the decommissioning of the 1990s-era ‘Barrier Lane Control’ computer that controlled them.

'Barrier Lane Control' computer for the Metcard gates at Flagstaff station

The Metcard gates were then disassembled.

Metcard barriers at Flagstaff station ready to be removed

With the ‘frankenbarrier’ conversion kits removed.

Box filled with Metcard 'frankenbarrier' conversion kits

I assume the old ticket gates were sent back to Metcard operator OneLink, while the Myki readers were sent go back to their owner – Kamco.

Scenes that are gone

One morning I was out at Sunshine, where I found two V/Line trains running parallel towards me.

3VL47 and classmate head towards Sunshine, with another VLocity closing in behind along the parallel track

It was a little unusual back then, but it’s impossible now – Regional Rail Link converted the tracks to two single directional tracks, removing flexibility if a broken down train blocks one line.

On a quiet weekend I found dozens of Melbourne Bus Link buses stabled for the weekend at their Footscray depot.

Melbourne Bus Link buses stabled for the weekend at Footscray depot

Melbourne Bus Link was replaced by Transdev in 2013, who were then replaced by Kinetic in 2022; and the depot in Footscray closed in 2016, replaced by a new depot at Sunshine West.

At Moonee Ponds Junction I found tram passengers playing frogger while trying to change between route 59 and route 82 trams.

B2.2003 arrives at Moonee Ponds Junction, with a diverted Z3.205 heading to West Maribyrnong

The mess of an interchange was rebuilt in 2016, providing a slightly nicer experience for passengers.

And finally, I spotted one of the seven surviving Hitachi trains in Melbourne running a Belgrave train at Southern Cross.

Hitachi 294M runs a down Belgrave train at Southern Cross

It took until December 2013 until the last one was finally withdrawn from revenue service.

Footnote

Here you can find the rest of my ‘photos from ten years ago‘ series.

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