Tale of the Tape

Here’s a high level look at what we were able to achieve on this project:


L-Beams Transported

…and counting!


Component LENGTH

The L-Beams had to be made as long as possible to reduce the number of spans required for each crossing.



The beams are made of pre-cast concrete with steel reinforcing bars embedded throughout.


INCIDENTS or Accidents

Especially impressive given the size of the beams and the restricted space we had to manoeuvre on site.

The Level Crossing Removal Project is an initiative from the Victorian Government to eliminate high risk rail level crossings around the state. Begun in 2015, ARES performed the transport for the Caulfield to Dandenong (CTD) level crossing removal project in 2017. In 2023, ARES was brought in once again for a number of level crossing removals.

U-Trough enough for this?

Most level crossing removals are achieved using an elevated rail overpass of the road below. To do this, a series of precast concrete ‘U-Troughs” are installed on piers. These U-troughs need to be strong enough to take the load of the fill material, rail tracks, and the trains themselves. For that reason, they tend to be very heavy and need to be split in half for transport (into L-beams), still weighing in at 125 tons per beam. To minimize the number of spans required for the overpass, they also tend to be very long (up to 30m).

To tackle this tricky combination of high length and high weight, ARES used three trailers per L-beam – a dolly, low loader and jinker.  Together, these allow the axle loads to remain acceptable, whilst being manoeuvrable enough to navigate the metropolitan areas around Melbourne and Geelong.

Webb Untangled.

The rail level crossing on Webb St at Narre Warren Station has been a source of frustration for locals for a long time. A big step towards getting rid of the level crossing for good was completed when ARES delivered a total of 64 massive L-beams to the site to be lifted into place above Webb St.  

Getting the beams into place near the installation cranes was no easy feat, given the tight confines around Narre Warren Station as well as the many construction barriers and access restrictions.  Our skilful drivers were able to get in and get out with no issue though!

The RouteS

The L-beams are manufactured by CIG in Laverton. These then had to be transported to the various level crossing removal sites.

For the Webb St Narre Warren project, the L-beams had to take the Metropolitan Ring Road all the way around Melbourne to Greensborough, wiggle through the eastern suburbs before taking the M3, Eastlink and M1 freeways down to Narre Warren.

For the Surf Coast Highway crossing removal, the loads took the M1 freeway all the way down past Geelong to Waurn Ponds before exiting to reach the construction site.


Around the same time as the Webb St Narre Warren project, ARES was also delivering L-beams for another level crossing removal – this time in Waurn Ponds, south of Geelong. Here, the tracks for the Geelong-Warrnambool line were being elevated above the busy Surf Coast Highway. With only a narrow window of 4 nights for the full road closure, there was no room for error, and ARES delivered.  

A total of 16 125-ton L-beams were delivered over the four consecutive nights with a minimum of fuss, allowing the Surf Coast Highway to be reopened to the public on time.

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