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Authors: Ian Woodcock (RMIT) ...
Authors: Ian Woodcock (RMIT) and Dr John Stone (The University of Melbourne)
Ian Woodcock Associate ...
Ian Woodcock Associate Lecturer, School of Global, Urban & Social Studies, RMIT University
In a recently released report, RMIT ...
In a recently released report, RMIT urban design lecturer Ian Woodcock and Dr John Stone from the University of Melbourne argue elevated train lines will create a more effective public transport system through better service coordination and more efficient network design.
Woodcock, a researcher with the Centre for Urban Research and an associate lecturer in the School of Global, Urban and Social Studies, said in order to capitalise on the substantial investment in the removal of level-crossings, elevating railway lines was a better option.
"If we elevate the railway, we maximise ground level connectivity and open up lots of opportunities to improve active transport options," he
"Access for improved feeder bus services, better bike paths and for pedestrians can all be improved to speed journeys and increase competitiveness of transit trips relative to car-based travel.''
has spent the last decade studying urban planning and design issues related to rail and tram corridors, authoring many peer-reviewed publications and research reports, and giving research seminars to industry, local councils and state government agencies.
A major theme of his
work is that much greater attention must be paid to improvements in public transport in order for the benefits of higher densities to be fully realised.
"For far too long the focus of planning policy has been on raising densities without ensuring adequate public transport is available.
Melbourne has a lot of catching up to do," Woodcock
The Benefits of Level Crossing Removals: Lessons from Melbourne's historical experience, examines Melbourne's rail network, which dates back to the 1850's and has undergone many upgrades and separations since then.
"Today, Melbourne has more than 170 level crossings, with plans to remove 50 within eight years,'' Woodcock
research had revealed that level crossing removals can be about much more than making roads safer and less congested.
RMIT University lecturer on ...
RMIT University lecturer on urban design Ian Woodcock says suburbs will be radically transformed after grade separations at rail and road intersections are complete.
"It leaves a very long legacy... the suburbs are going to look a lot different than what they do now."
The office of the Victorian Government Architect released a two-page report last year, entitled Level Crossings Removals: Lessons Learned, which noted such projects should be "viewed as a catalyst for urban renewal" and planning should "establish a vision for the site that is broader than improving transport efficiency".
believes elevated rail lines are a better option than a "road over rail" solution since the former effectively frees up land under the railway tracks for other uses.
"You can use the land for all kinds of stuff.
You can create open public land there," Mr Woodcock
said the digging of trenches to lower railway tracks disrupts habitats and can cause problems with waterways.
"I don't think construction costs are really the issue.
What everyone should be arguing for is the best overall outcome for all concerned."
A triple social, economic and environmental cost-benefit analysis would show "it is better overall", according to Mr Woodcock
Ian Woodcock is an Associate ...
Ian Woodcock is an Associate Lecturer at the Centre for Urban Research at RMIT University and can be contacted at woodcrmit.au.
Mr Ian Woodcock
Mr Ian Woodcock
Associate Lecturer, School of Global, Urban and Social Studies