MetroFAIL: North Melbourne Station

So, I’m not done kicking Metro yet. In fact, I may never be done, at least not while we still have privatisation. (But that’s a whole ‘nother, War-and-Peace-length rant.) In the meantime: something else Metro got wrong: the redesign of North Melbourne railway station.

I don’t know if you’ve been there or not, but I’m assuming that you have. If you haven’t, here are some photos of it.

  • First of all, I get that the budget had limits. So you probably could only afford two staircases. But why, oh why, did you think it was a good idea to put the two staircases you could afford on the two outer platforms, both of which are single platforms, rather than the two inner, double platforms? The mathematics of the situation alone suggests that the two inner platforms should be would be more trafficked, and thus, that the stairs would benefit more people there. Especially given that you tend to shut off the two outer platforms in off-peak times. Which brings me to:
  • When the platforms are shut off, you might want to turn off the escalators, the lights and the screens on those platforms. It would probably also be an idea not unalike to actual customer service if you could put the signs saying that the platforms are closed on the concourse, rather than on the actual platforms. I’m just sayin’.
  • Speaking of the screens – it would be nice if they pointed towards the station entrance rather than facing away. In fact, what would work best would be if they faced both ways.
  • On the subject of the screens, it would also be good if they were visible from the whole platform – and if you added some shades for them, so that they’re not simply reflecting panels on those terrifyingly rare days here in Melbourne that are not overcast.

And yes, I know that the government paid for it and chose the design and all, and it’s not so much like Metro’s fault. But they’re not making the best of the situation, and anyway, it was the government’s brilliant idea to privatise the system in the first place, so, y’know, guess what I think of them?

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