South Kensington Station: Unarguably the worst in Melbourne
A senior figure working for Rail Projects Victoria (RPV) – the state government department delivering the Melbourne Metro Tunnel – has dubbed South Kensington Station as “unarguably the worst metro station in Melbourne”.
Speaking at a community forum hosted by CBD residents’ group Residents 3000 on February 1, RPV’s manager of landowner and business support services Barry McGuren made the comments during an update on the Metro Tunnel project.
As part of the project, the state government has revitalised the areas surrounding the entrances to the station with a new pocket park, tree plantings and almost 3000 square metres of garden beds.
Despite South Kensington Station sitting at the western entrance to the metro tunnel, the state government has made no commitments to upgrading the station itself, which Kensington Association president Simon Harvey last year described as “the worst station he’d ever seen”.
The station’s narrow platforms, poor shelter, lighting, and accessibility have come under continuous scrutiny from residents, commuters and Greens MP for Melbourne and Kensington resident Ellen Sandell.
Mr McGuren, who is a Kensington resident himself, referred to the station during an update about the new park and artwork the Metro Tunnel project had delivered at its entrance.
“This [Kensington] is my hood and we've put up with a certain amount of disruption. Nothing like South Yarra, but we have got a new park, a beautiful new piece of legacy artwork called One Day in Our Park and we've got a nice, new tarted up entrance to South Kensington Station which is, unarguably, the worst metro station in Melbourne,” Mr McGuren said.
Ellen Sandell, who has been a leading advocate for upgrades to the station for many years, told North West City News that the state government still had no plans to make any changes despite persistent pleas from the community.
Ms Sandell most recently met with the Minister for Public and Active Transport Gabrielle Williams in late November to discuss the issue and has put in a Budget bid to Treasurer Tim Pallas to upgrade the station and change its timetable.
“South Kensington has been labelled the ‘worst train station in Melbourne', yet Labor still has no plans to invest in much-needed upgrades. Instead, they are pouring billions of dollars into toll roads that increase traffic in the area and pour pollution into our communities,” Ms Sandell said.
“Labor has ignored South Kensington Station for too long and people are sick of putting up with dangerous platforms, sub-par shelters and a dark and flood-prone underpass.”
“Once again, I have put in a proposal to the government to fund urgent upgrades to South Kensington Station in the upcoming state budget to make sure that the station is safe and accessible for all members of our community.”
“South Kensington residents deserve decent train services.”
The Department of Transport and Planning has been contacted for comment.