North shore cable upgrade project

 similar cable projects in the area

Ausgrid has installed new 132,000 Volt underground electricity cables along two routes: East Lindfield to Castle Cove and East Lindfield to Artarmon to supply power to our electricity network across the north shore.

Project need

Following public exhibition of the environmental assessments (Reviews of Environmental Factors or REFs) in early 2014 and consideration of community comments, Ausgrid approved the project for construction.

Cable installation is now complete and the cables between East Lindfield and Artarmon are now in service. One set of cables between East Lindfield and Castle Cove are now in service the remaining set of cables are planned to be in service by late October 2016.

All work along the streets is now complete with the exception of work in Carlyle Road, East Lindfield. This includes the reinstatement of roads. The reinstatement of footpaths and other affected areas are largely complete. See the reinstatement section below for more information.

Project planning overview

Planning a cable route can take a number of  years. There are a number of considerations as we plan the cable route. These include:

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

Project status

Following public exhibition of the environmental assessments (Reviews of Environmental Factors or REFs) in early 2014 and consideration of community comments, Ausgrid approved the project for construction.

Cable installation is now complete and the cables between East Lindfield and Artarmon are now in service. One set of cables between East Lindfield and Castle Cove are now in service the remaining set of cables are planned to be commissioned by late October 2016. 

All work along the streets is now complete, with the exception of a section near Ausgrid's substation in Carlyle Road, East Lindfield. Reinstatement of roads is finished and reinstatement of footpaths and other affected areas is also largely complete. See the reinstatement section below for more information.   

Project approval process

Ausgrid is responsible for assessing and approving works under the North Shore cable upgrade project. This process has included preparation of an environmental assessment (Review of Environmental Factors or REF) for each cable route, which includes a range of specialist studies and input from the community, councils and other authorities.The REFs conclude that the proposed works would not significantly affect the environment. Following public exhibition of the REFs in early 2014 and consideration of community comments, Ausgrid approved the project for construction.

Community consultation

The consultation process has involved Ausgrid presenting a proposed route and construction process to allow the community to comment and provide feedback for consideration by Ausgrid in preparing its detailed plans. The feedback that we have received during community displays, door knocks, home visits, submissions and by community members contacting us has been a valuable part of the project assessment process.

The project's environmental assessments (Reviews of Environmental Factors or REFs) were placed on public exhibition in February 2014 and interested members of the community were invited to review and provide comments for consideration by Ausgrid. The submission reports for each REF are available (see links at right).

The two main areas of interest in the project during the planning stage relate to electric and magnetic fields (EMF) and Ausgrid's initial plans to lay cables through a section of bushland in Artarmon Reserve. Ausgrid has made a number of changes to the plans to address community comments and concerns.  As outlined in the REFs, community input has resulted in the further reduction of electric and magnetic fields from the new cables and the avoidance of the remnant bush land in Artarmon Reserve.

We continue to welcome your feedback at any time to help us reduce the impact of our work as much as possible.

What to expect during construction

Like any construction work, the project will involve noise and dust, and temporary traffic and parking disruptions, which we would work to minimise as much as possible. Click here to view an information graphic showing the stages of cable laying.

Construction generally involves:

  • digging trenches, 800mm to 1400mm wide, to lay conduits (plastic pipes) to hold the new cables
  • filling trenches and resurfacing the area temporarily
  • trenching and resurfacing takes about three days outside each property depending on ground and weather conditions
  • excavating underground joint bays every 900 metres along the route in the road to feed in and join cables together
  • feeding in and joining the cables, which take two to four months to complete
  • work on the joint bays usually occur in distinct stages
  • final restoration of the areas excavated during the project is completed in consultation with local councils
  • reinstatement on other roads will be completed progressively along the route.

Reinstatement of roads

As each section of work was completed, a temporary surface was laid over the trench so that the road was returned to normal use. Once the cables were installed and tested excavated sections were reinstated permanently in consultation with local councils by specialist road construction crews.

Restoration in the Willoughby area is complete except sections of pavement in Artarmon Reserve and Hampden Road underpass. Restoration in the Ku-ring-gai area is finished except small sections of footpath in Wellington Road, East Lindfield.

The remaining work to be completed is:

Hampden Road underpass, Artarmon
Ausgrid’s restoration contractor is permanently restoring small sections of the shared pedestrian cycle path along the underpass between Punch Street and Taylor Lane.

Artarmon Reserve, Artarmon
Ausgrid’s restoration contractor will be completing permanent restoration on sections of the shared pedestrian cycle path near the southern side of the reserve and near the entrance to Chelmsford Avenue.

Wellington Road, East Lindfield
Ausgrid’s restoration contractor is permanently restoring small sections of the East Lindfield driveway and adjacent footpath, across from 85 Welllington Road.