DATE: Tuesday, July 2, 2002


A $700 million public/private partnership to redevelop the Spencer Street Station precinct – including a new world-class railway station – is set to change the face of Melbourne, Premier Steve Bracks announced today.

Launching the landmark transport and urban development project, Mr Bracks said it would create 4000 jobs and become the new gateway to Docklands.

Mr Bracks said the centrepiece of the project would be a new $350 million railway station, to be renamed Southern Cross Station, which would deliver world-class services to the 15 million customers who used the station each year.

Also included in the winning tender is the construction of a retail plaza and three office and apartment towers as part of a massive commercial redevelopment of the precinct.

"This exciting project will breathe new life into the city and provide a long overdue facelift for its western edge, which most Victorians regard as an embarrassing eyesore," Mr Bracks said.

"The spectacular design of the new station, with full glass street frontage on to Spencer St and the new Collins Street extension, will ensure the station becomes a new civic landmark for Victoria."

Mr Bracks named the winning consortium as Civic Nexus. Members of the consortium are: ABN Amro, who led and financed the proposal; Leighton Contractors, who will build the new station; and world renowned Australian architect Daryl Jackson and UK-based architect Nicholas Grimshaw.

Civic Nexus will:

Construct a new transport interchange, worth $350 million, including associated track and signalling works.
Maintain and operate the new railway station for the next 30 years, with total costs of approximately $100 million.

In return, the State will pay Civic Nexus $300 million through regular payments over the next 30 years.

Mr Bracks said the Civic Nexus redevelopment included the construction of a new retail plaza, and three office and apartment towers, within the Spencer Street Station precinct.

"The new residential and commercial buildings, combined with the new transport interchange, will generate construction activity worth about $700 million and create approximately 4000 jobs," he said.


Construction of the station will start by September 2002 and be completed by mid 2005, in time for the 2006 Commonwealth Games.

The Premier praised the winning design by world renowned Australian architect Daryl Jackson and UK architect Nicholas Grimshaw.

"It brings the best elements of modern railway station design from around the world to create a user-friendly, airport-style facility that will be easy and convenient for passengers to use and a new civic landmark for Melbourne," he said.

Features of the new station included:

An open design with vast, light-filled spaces, and all-glass street frontage on to the Collins St extension and Spencer St;
Secure, sheltered parking facilities for 800 cars plus drop-off areas;
A 30-bay bus station accommodating terminating and transiting coaches and buses, and providing ticketing facilities and waiting areas for their passengers;
Convenient access to the main terminal complex for trams travelling along Spencer Street and the new Collins Street extension
An innovative 'wave roof' design spanning across all platforms;
Links to Docklands via the Collins and Bourke Street alignments, with direct access to these bridges from all platforms;
In addition to the Bourke Street Pedestrian Bridge, a new footbridge will link Lonsdale Street with Colonial Stadium and connect with a retail plaza;
The Transport Mural is heritage listed and will be retained and located within the new facility;
Fully sheltered, high-quality waiting areas, equipped with comfortable seating, lighting, heating and air-conditioning and providing access to toilets, telephones, passenger information displays, catering facilities and other retail outlets;
Passenger security facilities throughout the Interchange Facility – including CCTV monitoring – and readily accessible passenger help-points and alarms connected to an on-site control room;
Efficient baggage handling facilities for interstate and long-distance intrastate rail and coach operations.

Transport Minister Peter Batchelor welcomed the announcement and said the redevelopment represented a major economic boost to Melbourne and regional Victoria.

"This redevelopment is at the heart of the Government's vision for a modern, integrated transport system," he said.

The redevelopment is a key component of the Linking Victoria $3.5 billion policy to revitalise transport infrastructure in Victoria in partnership with the private sector.

"In short, it is a bold and magnificent landmark to open up Melbourne's west and the new waterfront precinct of Docklands," Mr Batchelor said.

On average, the station attracts 55,000 commuters per day, 15 million a year. The new design provides capacity for future growth and travel demand to benefit 45 million passengers a year.

The new station will also facilitate the Fast Rail Links to regional Victoria bringing greater commercial and tourism development closer together. It will continue to operate as a fully functioning station throughout the construction phase.