A facelift for Flinders Street Station

A fleet of Indeco breakers demolish the old structures outside Melbourne's historic monument in record time.

1 July 2016

Flinders Street Station is among Australia’s and Melbourne’s most recognisable landmarks. The terminus was the first city railway station on the continent and is surely the best-known.

Over the years, Flinders Street Station has emerged as a symbol of Victoria’s capital city and is an institution in the daily routine of nearly a quarter of a million people. So it is easy to imagine why the reconstruction of dual tram tracks on the corners of Flinders and Swanston Streets was always going to be difficult. This project required the closure of Melbourne’s busiest intersection to enable the replacement of old tram tracks, as well as laying new electrical conduits and tarmac. The job needed to be done fast to ensure the safety and reliability of Melbourne’s train and tram network system that carries millions of commuters annually in Australia’s second biggest city.

Coleman Rail, the main contractor for the job, was formed in 2002 to undertake construction and maintenance contracting in light rail and related activities in Australia, South East Asia and New Zealand. Due to the strict guidelines for Melbourne’s tram system, reconstruction deadlines were extremely tight, and substantial fines were to be imposed if the project was not completed on time.

For this reason, seven different contractors – each with their own excavator – were employed to get the job done as fast as possible. When they turned up, each one was equipped with an Indeco hammer for breaking up the road and tracks. Casabene Excavations and Drainage, one of the major sub-contractors employed, are also one of the largest Indeco customers in Australia, with a fleet of 23 Indeco breakers, ranging from the small HP 150 up to the HP 7000 for deep trenching projects. Pip Casabene formed a relationship with Indeco Australia in 1995 and has complemented his excavator fleet with Indeco breakers for excavation work in Melbourne ever since.

Indeco was the common thread which made this job such a success. The work was completed on time, meeting the stringent deadline to complete one of the most vital infrastructure projects the city of Melbourne has seen in recent years.