A tree planting ceremony has marked the formal end of National Grid’s Croydon Cable Tunnel Project, bringing to a close a project which began half a decade ago. The ceremony took place at one of the project’s former tunneling sites at Kent Gate Way, Croydon, UK. Attendees included local councillor Jason Cummings, residents from the area and project team members.
Linking National Grid’s substations at Beddington and Rowdown the 10-km tunnel houses a 400-kV electricity cable which is now helping deliver power supplies to the region. The tunnel went operational last year and is now helping to feed electricity into homes, businesses and community facilities across London and the South East.
National Grid project manager Scott Sadler said: “National Grid’s job is to connect people to the energy they use and that’s just what we’ve done with this project which will help keep the lights on in this area, London and beyond. Building a power tunnel deep underground meant we didn’t need to dig up the local road network to lay the cables which meant less disruption for the community.”
Work on the project began in 2006 with tunneling carried out between 2007 and 2009. The power line was then installed using a specially tailored cable pulling machine, built for the job by contractor BBUS. This innovative approach made the process both safer and more efficient than manually installing the cables.
Delivering the vital project with minimal impact to the local community was a priority to National Grid, which won two considerate contractor awards with principal contractor Morgan Sindall for the scheme. Construction related noise and traffic levels were all strictly controlled and monitored. Over 4,000 properties received regular updates on the progress of the project with vehicle movements to and from sites strictly controlled and monitored. Great effort was also taken to landscape project construction sites to their previous or better condition once work was complete.
Sadler said: “On behalf of National Grid I’d like to thank the local communities where we have worked for the last six years for their understanding and cooperation during the construction process. Work on the project may be complete now but the benefits of the safe and reliable power supplies it helps deliver will be enjoyed for decades to come.”