Homebush cable project

 

Ausgrid is laying new 33,000 Volt underground electricity cables between our Homebush substation in Pomeroy Street to the Sydney Trains site in Columbia Lane, to allow for our Strathfield substation to be decommissioned.  

Project need

Ausgrid’s Strathfield substation, located in Columbia Lane Homebush, is nearing the end of its serviceable life and is planned to be retired from service in 2018.To allow the substation to be retired, Ausgrid needs to transfer the electricity load to other parts of the network. This includes installing a new power supply for the Sydney Trains Strathfield site, which is located next to our Strathfield substation.

Ausgrid is planning to provide this supply by installing new 33,000 Volt underground electricity cables from our nearby Homebush substation in Pomeroy Street to the Sydney Trains site. Once the new cables are installed and the Strathfield substation is retired, Ausgrid plans to retain the site as a storage yard. The existing 132,000 Volt overhead powerlines entering the site will remain in service.

 

 

Project planning overview

Ausgrid considers a number of factors when planning a cable route. These include:

  • public health and safety
  • availability of space around existing underground utility services
  • community impacts
  • environmental impacts
  • cost (minimising the impact on electricity bills)
  • technical feasibility
  • traffic considerations.

Planning the cable route

In planning the cable route there were a number of factors we considered, including:

  • environment and heritage impacts
  • community and traffic impacts
  • location of existing utilities services under the roads (power cables, gas and water mains)
  • constructability ease of access for future maintenance
  • minimising the use of major roads
  • minimise route length to lower the cost of construction and to reduce community impacts
  •  the location of other local projects
  • liaison with councils, infrastructure providers and utilities about their program of works.

 

Project status

Construction is planned to start in September 2017. Work will continue until mid 2018.

Project approval process

Ausgrid is the approving authority for these works under the NSW Environmental Planning & Assessment Act. As part of the approval process, Ausgrid has conducted environmental assessments for this project, including the preparation of specialist studies and considering relevant input from the community, councils and other authorities.

Community consultation

Ausgrid has been consulting with Council and other stakeholders since 2015. The first community newsletter introduced local residents and businesses to the project in March 2016 and feedback was sought on the cable route.

Thank you to everyone who has provided feedback as part of the project planning process. Ausgrid’s cable route has been planned with consideration of Council and community feedback.

Ausgrid will continue to engage with the community living or working near the route as the project progresses. 

 

Environment and health standards

Ausgrid plans its infrastructure in line with relevant environmental and health standards for the protection of both the environment and the community.This includes designing and operating the new cables to minimise electric and magnetic fields and managing issues such as noise, dust and vibration during construction.

 

 

Reinstatement of roads and reserves

The majority of the cable route is through local reserves. As each section of work is completed in these areas, the trenches will be backfilled and resurfaced. 

Following trenching and cable installation in roads, a temporary surface would be laid over the trench so that the road can return to normal use. The temporary road surface remains in place until the cables have been pulled through the conduits (pipes) and tested.

The excavated sections are then reinstated permanently in consultation with the relevant road authority. Ausgrid will generally restore the trench area plus 300 milimetres either side, however each section is assessed on a case by case basis in consultation with Council.

In line with Council’s future plans for the area, Ausgrid will reinstate the cable route through the reserves with a footpath for local park users.

What to expect during construction

Ausgrid understands there will be temporary impacts during construction, particularly on residents and businesses living or working close to the route which we will work to minimise. A range of construction impacts may be experienced including noise and dust, and temporary traffic, access and parking disruptions, which we will work to minimise as much as possible.

During construction, the reserves along the route will remain open, including the off-leash dog area in Allen Street Reserve. Access may be temporarily reduced in some areas while we carry out works. In this case, alternative access would be provided.

Ausgrid does not plan to interrupt your power supply during this work.

We continue to welcome your feedback to help Ausgrid and our contractors manage the construction process effectively.

Construction generally will involve:

  • final site investigations to assess ground conditions and pinpoint existing services such as electricity, gas and water
  • excavating cable trenches and laying conduits (plastic pipes) to house the cables
  • directional drilling (bores) may be used at some locations to pass roads, rail and waterways
  • backfilling trenched areas temporarily
  • excavating pits approximately every 800 metres where sections of cables would be pulled through and joined together 
  • excavating other associated pits and final reinstatement of affected areas 
  • connecting and testing the new cables
  • decommissioning parts of the Strathfield substation.