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Regional Rail Revival Program – Toolern, Rockbank and Bacchus Marsh Train Stations

Updated: Oct 10, 2019

Image courtesy of 2019 RAIL PROJECTS VICTORIA

When it comes to mammoth railway infrastructure projects on the Victorian rail network, you could say we’ve managed a few. From Caulfield to Dandenong, Cranbourne to Packenham and now the Ballarat region – we can paint any surfaces and structures at height, across cities and into regional zones. The Regional Rail Revival Program, a $1.75 billion joint State and Australian Government initiative that will upgrade every regional passenger train line in Victoria is the focus for this blog.


With more services and improved reliability for Melbourne’s outer-western lines, over four months and across 10000m²surface, this project of work saw us painting the newly built Toolern station, along with the rebuilt and upgraded Rockbank and Bacchus Marsh stations.

Starting with Toolern and working night and day to meet the timelines of a compressed program that ensured accelerated access for a growing population and public need, we managed the combined decorative painting and protective coatings for the works. To get the surfaces right – and we’re talking a series of walls, abutments, concrete structures, ramps, soffit panels and lift shafts – we prepped with a high pressure clean using hard water to remove dirt, grime, dust and mud to significantly improve the lifetime of the paint.

Working with brushes and rollers, we ensured a precise finish (well, it’s always precise with Smart – but given the structures and type of asset protection required for the job, spray wasn’t option). We used a premium, high performance protective coating across all surfaces and got our creativity on with five colours, including metallics across the columns that hold up the overpass.


It’s no secret that largescale infrastructure projects have their own set of challenges due to the number of trades working alongside each other to get the job done. With the right preparation and a focus on keeping the communication going, these variables can be managed … successfully. We were working with a construction team that ranged anywhere from builders, steel workers, plumbers, electricians and concreters, across a tight schedule, on a day and night program to reach the finish line on time. To keep the conversation moving and make sure everyone was on track, we held daily toolbox meetings.

What did we talk about? Everything. These meetings took us anywhere from managing the tasks of the day, to restructuring our ‘on the tools’ timings to line up with the different team operations on site, or more serious topics like safety, train schedules and weather impacts. It’s safe to say that communication is integral. A project of this scale is a moving landscape, which sees daily changes based on operations within the rail system and the larger program of works … so, talking at the start of each day goes a long way in making sure everything is in working order, and everyone is across the minor or major details of the tasks at hand.


Ensuring the utmost safety is essential for every job; especially when operating on active railway lines, like we did for the Regional Rail Revival. Accreditation is key – all teams working on major government initiatives are trained, qualified and accredited to work on site, this, coupled with mandatory protective equipment – long sleeves, long pants, steel cap boots, high vis, and approved vehicles – means that injuries, accidents and lost hours are minimised or completely avoided.


With Toolern, Rockbank and Bacchus Marsh stations complete – we’re proud to have worked on an initiative that sees Ballarat line passengers having better train stations and services, more frequent and reliable train services, and better connectivity from Melbourne to regional centers. The ongoing program that revives Victoria's regional rail network, delivering major upgrades to every passenger line, continues to progress through to late 2019.

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