New Glen Huntly station

It looks pretty good – except that the design leads almost everybody to the far southern end of the platform.

The new Glen Huntly station opened on Monday, and I stopped past on Monday night.

It’s great to have the trains running again, and shiny new stations are always fun.

Trains at the new Glen Huntly station

If you have Threads on your device, or you’re using a desktop, you can view a short video here.

It’s not completed yet, but enough of it is functional to open it to the public. Work will continue over coming months.

The new Glen Huntly station, entrance under construction
The new Glen Huntly station, concourse under construction

No real surprises – except one.

Hark back to the details of the station design released in 2021, which included this render:

Artist impression: new Glenhuntly station platforms (June 2021)

I interpreted this as showing the middle of the platform, so that passengers would enter the platform in the middle, rather than at the far northern end as with the old station.

Turns out this is not the case. The lifts will drop you further along, but most people will use the stairs will take you to the very southern end of the platform.

The new Glen Huntly station, stairs to platforms 1 and 2

This means for citybound trains, lots of people will be boarding the rear carriage.

This is not great – this is little better than the old station.

Perhaps they were limited by the gradient back up to street level heading south, before reaching the pedestrian crossing at Wattle Avenue.

This is not the first time the lack of design detail the LXRP puts online has been an issue. You’d hope they actually want feedback on designs, but it’s not possible if the information doesn’t make it clear what is going to be built.

As it is, Metro will be hoping that passengers at Glen Huntly are proactive in spreading themselves along the platform, particularly in peak, to keep carriage crowding and dwell times under control.

Update 5/8/2023: The other thing I notice using this station: decades of sensing when approaching Glen Huntly (outbound) from the sound/vibration of crossing the tram tracks is now gone!

As this video shows, express trains now run through the station faster than ever.

Also it appears (for now at least) they’re consistently using platform 3 (Glen Huntly to Moorabbin) for outbound trains. Previously they’ve mostly used platform 2 for outbound trains except during morning peak.

Consistency is good, though it means in the evenings, PSOs on one platform can’t quickly access the other.

By Daniel Bowen

Transport blogger / campaigner and spokesperson for the Public Transport Users Association / professional geek.
Bunurong land, Melbourne, Australia.
Opinions on this blog are all mine.

17 replies on “New Glen Huntly station”

The station was moved north because the modern standard wide, straight platforms meant it didn’t fit into the rail corridor at Dorothy Ave and Rothschild St corner.
It does feel weird arriving at the bottom of the stairs facing the very end of the platform, but it’s not a lot different to Union where you land some distance beyond the start or end of the trains, and the lifts are even further away. Union is only better because it has an entrance at each end.

It is very clear from the render you showed that the access point was going at one extreme end of the platform, as you can see the entire platform in the image if you zoom in. Platform numbers then determine this to be the southern end.

The majority of new stations constructed in the last eight years have had the platform access at one end or the other. Very few have had them situated in the middle. Even less have had two accesses. This itself isn’t a big issue at all so long as loading is distributed along the line and all stations aren’t accessed at the same end.

I reckon it should’ve been built between neerim road and the old station. That way direct access at both ends for neerim road buses also.

Given the light loading often seen in the front and rear carriages, is it a bad thing that this station has an entrance near the rear of the train?

We used the station yesterday, mainly for a look. I didn’t check in advance if the lifts were working. My partner struggled with the stairs. I planned to have a good look before catching the train and tram home but my partner suggested we just catch the tram to avoid the stairs and the steep South Yarra Station ramp. Interestingly the tram trip took only four minutes longer than train/tram.

So aside from noticing the station is a long way from being complete, and may as well not be for some people who can’t deal with stairs, I didn’t get to have a good look around. Thanks for the photos.

Meanwhile at Metro Trains and elsewhere, the Glen Huntly/Glenhuntly battle goes on. A real estate agent had a bob each way with the office address being Glenhuntly Road, Glen Huntly.

Oh yes, there was a woman at a cafe who thanked passing hi-vis workers returning from a break for the fine work they had done. That was nice and the workers looked rather pleased.

I wonder why there are no fare control gates though, with only one entrance and new construction it should’vebeen fairly easy to install them…

Miniscule gap between stairs and trains compared with Flinders St platform 10 and the St Kilda Rd escalators.

@Andrew (1), it’s a shame they didn’t switch it to the northern side of Glen Huntly Road. There are precedents for this, such as Hughesdale.

@Damo, I don’t think it was that clear from the render. I don’t recall anybody calling it out at the time.

Good point about the distribution over a number of stations. Thankfully most CBD platforms have multiple access points, though platforms 12/13 lead to heavy loads in the rear of outbound Sandringham line trains.

@M, I’m not sure, but I wouldn’t be surprised if the design is intended to allow future upgrade to a staffed/gated station. (Gates aren’t installed unless there is a fulltime staff presence).

Most regular passengers will surely spread out? For example I know which carriage door to get on at Southland to line up with the exit at Malvern, and I get on the last carriage if exiting at Richmond. I congratulate myself when I do it with precision!

Many stations, especially those with a bias of an entrance on one side of the station could use with a second entrance on the other end if practical. I could understand if those which have automated gates may need someone to monitor it in case someone needs assistance but then stations with regular tap without gates doesn’t need this.

Most of our stations have few entry or exit points and this trend of entry from one end is common on the newer ones. South Morang, Footscray, and Epping come to mind. Dwell times are still hopelessly short when we force the slow “touch off” process on Myki users, as I saw yesterday with passengers trying to get to a game at the MCG.

As for automated gates, I got off a V/Line from Bairnsdale at Caulfield station last week. No gates were open, and no staff to be seen. With a paper ticket, I had no option but to jump the barrier and force the suitcase through underneath.

One potential benefit of the front/rear of the train being beyond the exit of the escalators is that people won’t gather at the bottom of those escalators. You get to the bottom and you have to turn and move to get to where the train will be. It can get quite dangerous when people gather at the bottom of escalators. But it was a little bit of a weird surprise.

As others have noted, a second exit to Neerim Road (or even the northern side of GH Road) would have made it easier for people changing to/from buses along Neerim Road.

@Kevin, that’s a good point. It’ll be interesting to see how people behave with the new design.

There are plenty of stations with access at only one end, but not too many where the entry onto the platform has you facing away from where the train will be.

I can’t say I agree with the comments about the poor shelter on the platforms. A good portion of them being under the road provides shelter. I know there are also requirements about minimum percentages of the platforms being covered; surely this would be achieved with a newly built station?

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