A major Ausgrid (formerly EnergyAustralia) substation for Balgowlah is expected to be powered up by mid-year, after the installation of three large zone transformers and state-of-the-art protection equipment. The $30 million zone substation is expected to be commissioned by mid-year year and will supply power to more than 8,000 homes and businesses in Balgowlah, Clontarf, Fairlight, Manly and Seaforth.
Ausgrid General Manager Transmission Trevor Armstrong said more than 40 protection technicians, cable jointers, electrical fitters and testers had helped build and fit out this important piece of electrical infrastructure over the past 18 months. “The two year design for the project was necessary to help protect local bushland and waterways,” Armstrong said.
“We’re currently installing high voltage underground power cables along a 6-km route that will connect the new substation with a major supply point in Warringah. “As part of that work, we built a special cable bridge over Manly Creek so we didn’t need to excavate near the historic Sloan Bridge. We also avoided working near a small section of River-Flat Eucalypt forest. Local bushland groups made it clear that they wanted these areas protected while we went about our work.
“It’s also been an important training ground for a team of apprentices who have helped with wiring switchgear, and fitting out the new substation protection panels,” Armstrong said.
The final electrical fit out of the substation is continuing, including the installation of more than 5 km of 11 kV cables that will transport power from the substation to the local electricity network.
Once complete the North Balgowlah zone substation will replace the existing Balgowlah zone substation. A new 33-kV underground cable link will also be established to form an extra back-up supply and allow more flexibility into the Northern Beaches electricity network. The work is part of a $300 million investment in the Northern Beaches electricity network from 2009 to 2014.