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NORTH SUBURBAN RAILWAY SYSTEM.
PLAN SHOWING THE RIVAL LINES AND THE FITZROY AND NORTHCOTE JUNCTION.
The above plan shows the extension to the Rival Direct Routes (particulars and relative cost of which were given in our issue of Wednesday, 7th Inst), and also the Junction of the Existing and Proposed Lines at Union street, Northcote.
The Scheme for the Fitzroy and Whittlesea line (the contract for which was recently let, and the works now in progress of construction) provides for
an extensive station at Union street on the St.
George's Park Estate, the area of land acquired by the Railway department for that purpose embracing a width of 264ft., extending from Union street to Charles street and at the time the land was taken over by the department some surprise was expressed at the large area to be utilised far station purposes. It is now, however, evident that the Commissioners foresaw the absolute necessity for providing for the loop lines to connect both the Outer Circle Line and the Alphington and Heidelberg Line with the Fitzroy or Collingwood Line at this point, and last week the Commissioners completed arrangements with the proprietors of the Fltzroy Junction Estate (the ad- joining block between Union street and Westgarth street) to acquire a still wider strip in order to pro- vide for the loop lines referred to. The question as to which direct route is to be adopted having yet to be decided by Parliament, the Railway Commissioners have exercised a wise discretion in thus securing in the meantime the land necessary to provide for the Junction of the important lines above referred to, and it may be remarked in passing that had the ques- tion of securing this additional land been delayed a week or two longer the Commissioners would have had to treat with numerous small holders, as the land had been cut up, and the subdivisonal plan way about to be issued for the sale advertised for the 10th inst. In settling for the purchase of this land, pro- vision was wisely made by the Commissioners for the erection of a footbridge (in connection with the Rail-
way Bridge across the Merri Creek) opposite the lower end of Westgarth street, which will give ready and easy access to and from the Northcote Junction Station. There is little doubt that either the Fitzroy or Collingwood lines will be included in the next Rail- way Bill, and a good deal of rivalry exists between the two municipalities as to which has the best claim. The former line is supported by the residents of Fitzroy, Northcote, Preston, Whittlesea, and Heidel-
berg, while the latter relies principally on the large
population residing in and around the municipality itself. The Station at Union-street, as shown on our plan, must necessarily be the most important in the Northern System, as lines branch from this point to Preston and Whittlesea on the north ; Heidelberg Kew, &.c., on the east ; Carlton, Royal-park, North Melbourne, and Spencer-street on the south-west; Fitzroy, East Melbourne, and Flinders-street on the south; and if the alternative route is adopted, Clifton-hill, Collingwood, Richmond, and Flinders
street on the south east.