Flagstaff railway station, Melbourne

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Flagstaff is an underground station in the suburban train network of Melbourne, Australia. It is one of five stations (and one of three underground) on the City Loop, which encircles the central business district (CBD). The station services Melbourne's legal district, and is under La Trobe Street at William Street, near the north western corner of the CBD, and takes its name from the nearby Flagstaff Hill, a significant site in Melbourne's early history.


It is the fifth busiest metropolitan railway station in Melbourne, but is the quietest of the stations that serve the CBD. In 2009 there was an average of 14,300 passenger boardings per day. Flagstaff station is the only station in Melbourne to be closed on weekends and public holidays; as it is located close to business related buildings such as the Commonwealth Law Complex, banks and major office buildings.


Platforms and services

Platform 1:


  • Epping line - all stations services to Epping
  • Hurstbridge line - all stations and limited stops services to Heidelberg, Macleod, Greensborough, Eltham and Hurstbridge
  • City Loop - all stations services to Flinders Street

Platform 2:


  • Dandenong line - all stations and limited stops services to Oakleigh, Westall, Dandenong, Pakenham and Cranbourne
  • Frankston line - all stations and limited stops services to Cheltenham, Mordialloc, Carrum and Frankston
  • City Loop - all stations services to Flinders Street

Platform 3:


  • Craigieburn line - all stations services to Broadmeadows and Craigieburn
  • Upfield line - all stations services to Gowrie and Upfield
  • Sydenham line - all stations and limited stops services to Sunshine, St Albans and Watergardens
  • Werribee line - all stations and limited stops services to Werribee
  • City Loop - all stations services to Flinders Street

Platform 4:


  • Lilydale and Belgrave lines - all stations and limited stops services to Box Hill, Blackburn, Ringwood, Lilydale, Upper Ferntree Gully and Belgrave
  • Glen Waverley line - all stations and limited stops services to Glen Waverley
  • Alamein line - all stations services to Riversdale, Ashburton and Alamein
  • City Loop - all stations services to Flinders Street

History

The station was constructed by mining methods, and has four levels to a maximum depth of 32 metres. The site was a geological 'sandwich' of basalt in the arch area, Silurian mudstone bedrock in the lower half, and silt in the middle, which precluded the construction of the lower and upper platforms as separately driven tunnels.


Instead the station platforms are made up of two chambers linked by cross tunnels, each having two platforms on top of each other. The side of each chamber was made up of two drift tunnels, one at the top and one at the bottom. These were then linked together by 228 vertically raise bored shafts, 1 metre in diameter and 3 metres apart. The shafts and drifts were then filled with concrete, and formed the side skeleton of the station chambers. The arch of each chamber was then constructed underground across the top of the two side walls, the material below the arch excavated down to the bottom of the side walls, and temporary cross struts added between the raise bored columns until the permanent elements were added. This innovative method resulted in $1 million in 1975 money to be saved in construction costs.


Flagstaff opened to passengers on 27 May 1985 and was the last on the loop to open. Trains had run through the station since 24 January 1981 when the City Loop was opened.


Facilities

The station is located under the intersection of William and Latrobe Streets and has two entrances - via lift or escalator south of Latrobe Street, and by stairs on the north. Flagstaff has three underground levels. The concourse level has a ticket office, ticket operated gates, toilets, a news stand and a hot snack shop. Flagstaff's four platforms are on the two levels below, with each level having an island platform. The levels are linked by elevators, 14 escalators and stairs. The four platforms serve a separate group of rail lines that leave the loop and radiate out into the city's suburbs.

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