The entire underground electricity network on St. Huberts Island is to be replaced under a $7 million EnergyAustralia program designed to modernize the area’s power supply.
More than 5 km of 11-kV distribution cables will be replaced as part of the work, as well as a number of low voltage cables connecting homes to the electricity network.
EnergyAustralia’s Area Manager for the Central Coast, Tom Wilcox, said the project would improve the quality and reliability of supply for about 500 customers living on the island. “The existing network has served the community well since the early 1970s,” Mr Wilcox said. “But it is nearing the time when it needs to be replaced to make sure it continues to provide a safe and reliable supply of electricity.
“The entire underground network will be replaced in six stages over 18 months, and at the same time we will be upgrading the local distribution substation to cater for increasing demand for power from homes on the island. “The original underground electricity supply was installed directly in the sub-soil, leaving it more susceptible to corrosion and accidental damage. As part of this work, special conduits will be laid to encase the new underground cables.”
Wherever possible, existing cable routes will be followed during the upgrade, however, it will not be possible in some areas because of substantial changes to the streetscape since the original network was rolled out. "We’ll also be providing more information to residents affected by any interruptions required for the work as we start each stage of the project," Wilcox said.
More than $610 million is being invested in the Central Coast electricity network from 2009 to 2015 to replace existing infrastructure, cater for increasing demand for power and meet new reliability standards.