THE concept designs for a new $18M pedestrian overpass at the Shepparton Railway Station will soon be put out for public consultation. If passed and government funding is successfully sought the project is set to provide better access and an improved visual entrance to the city for those travelling by rail.
The unopposed motion was carried at the recent Greater Shepparton City Council meeting to authorise for exhibition the Shepparton Railway Station Pedestrian Overpass Concept Plan October 2018 and the Shepparton Railway Station Shared Pathway Linkages Concept Plans June 2018 for public comment for a period of six weeks from January 7, 2019 to February 18, 2019.
The concept design features brightly coloured cladding that wraps around the bridge, the stairs, and the lift cores, suggesting the movement of fruit along a conveyor belt. This holistic design provides a dynamic visual effect which changes according to the viewing angle, while maintaining signal sightlines.
To comply with the various requirements of the State Government rail authorities, the construction cost has been estimated at approximately $18,826,500, which would be met by the State Government. Confirmation of the final design to be constructed is set to be determined by the relevant rail authority at the time of the allocation of a budget.
As part of the project, the construction of shared pathway links would be constructed, coming to an estimated cost of $4,748,300, which is expected to be met, in part or full, by council.
Speaking to the unopposed motion at the recent council meeting, Cr Fern Summer said, “It’s a great project. I have already been contacted by a ratepayer who didn’t think this project is value for money and said that it cost too much. I can understand that they might think that without looking at the detail.
“It is part of our core responsibility to make sure infrastructure and design and amenities are all in line with community expectation and that area where people that are arriving at our town is highly run down, so I am very supportive of it (the project).
“We do have many projects at the moment on the go and we are being quite ambitious…not all of them are funded and obviously this project is still requiring funds but we never know which projects are going to catch the eye of state and federal grants, so we need to be shovel ready with these projects for when things get moving.
“Every one of our entrances needs to offer the best first impression to visitors. We invest so much in trying to get people to come to Shepparton so first impressions matter and we want people to keep coming back.
“Hopefully these upgrades, once we get moving on them, will increase the number of train commuters which will further bolster our argument for federal funding to increase the number of train services.”