Rail commuters across Moreton Bay will face new challenges in 2024 as local train stations suddenly get busier.
The closure of Burpengary train station (from 22 January) for a $53m accessibility upgrade will place new pressures on several busy train stations nearby, including Narangba, Dakabin, Morayfield and Caboolture.
Park ‘n’ ride commuters will be competing for car parking spots at nearby train stations, which are already at or near capacity. The closure of Burpengary station will remove about 140 parking spots from the total and force rail commuters to an alternative railway station.
Commuters who wish to drive to a nearby train station have been advised by Queensland Rail to head for the multi-storey car park at Dakabin station, because of “very limited” parking at Narangba and Morayfield stations.
As an alternative, Queensland Rail has advised that a dedicated shuttle bus service (661) will run between Burpengary and Narangba stations, with limited parking available at Burpengary station for shuttle commuters. The shuttle will run every 10 to 15 minutes during peak hour, and connect with arriving trains at other times.
Banyo, Morningside, Lindum, Buranda and Bundamba train stations are also closing for similar upgrades.
Queensland Rail CEO Kat Stapleton announced the closures and urged customers to become familiar with the alternative transport plan.
“By closing the stations temporarily, our contractors can hit the ground running with these major works and main construction can kick off safely and efficiently,” Ms Stapleton said.
Queensland Rail announced in September 2023 that the Burpengary upgrade was expected to be completed by September 2024, pending possible weather and construction delays.
The transformation will be the biggest change to Burpengary railway station since it was built as a small platform in 1888, and will deliver accessibility and ease of use for everybody, especially wheelchair users and those using prams or carrying heavy items.
A new overpass with lifts, together with raised platforms to reduce the platform gap, will make catching a train safer and easier. There will be a new station building, accessible toilets, a disability-compliant ticket window, improved seating and extended platform shelters.
The Burpengary station building, built in 1917 and featured on the Queensland Rail Heritage register, will remain where it is as part of the upgrade.
State Member for Kurwongbah Shane King, who is a local ambassador for improved rail services, said the transformation was the start “of an important journey for inclusivity at the Burpengary Railway Station.”
Mr King is also looking ahead to late 2024 when the upgrade is complete, and the station will require more parking, an important mechanism in helping to remove commuter traffic from Moreton Bay roads.
He has begun a petition for more parking at Burpengary station, which can be viewed at https://actionnetwork.org/petitions/a-petition-for-parking-at-burpengary-train-station
Commuters needing to familiarise themselves with the shuttle bus timetable can visit www.queenslandrail.com.au/inthecommunity/projects/burpengary-station-upgrade for more information.