Cessnock South zone substation

Cessnock zone substation supplies residential, industrial and commercial customers in the Cessnock, Bellbird and Aberdare areas as well as the vineyards to the west of Cessnock. 

Ausgrid is planning to proceed with construction of a new zone substation as a replacement for the existing Cessnock zone substation at 23 South Avenue Cessnock.

The site for the new substation, to be known as Cessnock South zone substation, is vacant land behind and adjacent to the existing zone substation. This property is owned by Ausgrid.

Cessknock south

This is an impression of the Cessnock South substation as viewed from South Avenue, Cessnock

Project need

Cessnock zone substation was constructed in 1963. Key pieces of equipment are now approaching the end of their service life. 

The most cost effective means of ensuring continued reliability of electricity supply for customers is to construct a new zone substation. 

The existing facility will remain in service until the new substation is commissioned. The new facility will be located on land to the rear of the existing substation (click here to view site map).

Project status

Ausgrid has finalised its plans and the project has been approved for construction. We expect a civil contractor to be on site in 2016 to begin work.

Following completion of the construction, electrical equipping, connection of the new substation to the network and final commissioning will take a further 12 months to complete. We anticipate that the substation will be ready for service by early 2018.

Once the new Cessnock South substation is fully operational, electrical equipment will be removed from the yard of the existing Cessnock substation. It is likely that the brick building will be retained for additional office space for Ausgrid’s Cessnock depot.

Building design

The new substation will be an indoor/indoor design with most of the equipment housed within an architecturally designed building.

Ausgrid and architects Schreiber Hamilton have developed a cost-effective and functional concept to accommodate the equipment required within the available land parcel. 

The building will be made from painted tilt-slab concrete panels with a colorbond roof. Neutral external colours have been employed to assist the building to blend in with its environment.

An architect’s sketch of the building can be seen above.


Project approval process

Under the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979, Ausgrid is the determining authority for this project. 

An Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) was prepared for the project in accordance with Part 5 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 and Clause 228 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Regulation 2000.

The EIA investigates the potential environmental impacts associated with the construction, operation and maintenance of the proposed substation. It also recommends mitigation measures as required to ensure any impacts are at acceptable levels. Ausgrid assessed the project for construction approval based on information contained in the EIA. 

Community consultation

The basic size and shape of the building is necessary to meet the community’s electricity requirements, as well as to ensure the new substation can fit the available space.

Ausgrid has consulted with adjoining neighbours as part of developing plans for the project.

We welcome questions and feedback at any time as the project progresses. Please get in touch via the contacts at right.

What to expect during construction

There will be some noise associated with the construction phase of this project however, the location of the site means that this should not create any inconvenience for nearby residents.

Any potential impacts are assessed as part of an environmental assessment (known as an EIA) and measures put in place to minimise impacts on the local environment.

The work with most significant impact would typically be during the first twelve months of the project as the builder carries out earthworks and building construction.

Installation of new equipment within the new structure would be of lower impact with staff working predominantly within the building.Ausgrid does not plan to interrupt local electricity supplies as part of this project.