Dunedin waterfront poles to be undergrounded along shared pathway

17 Oct 2018

Aurora Energy will be undergrounding a section of poles and overhead lines along the Dunedin waterfront.

Aurora Energy General Manager Asset Management and Planning, Glenn Coates says the project will see the existing poles removed and converted to underground cable in the section from the start of the shared path near the University Rowing Club to the West Harbour Rugby Club.

"Once the one-kilometre, high-voltage underground cable is installed, the existing 18 poles and overhead line will be fully removed. The conversion to underground cable will use ducting that was installed at the time the shared path was built.

"We believe the project will beautify the shared path and supports the aims of local transport partners Dunedin City Council, NZ Transport Agency and Otago Regional Council in providing safe and convenient connections for local communities."

"There are a number of positive outcomes from the undergrounding project, that will:

  • enhance the shared walk and cycleway along the West Harbour waterfront with the removal of the poles and overhead wires
  • remove a number of poor condition power poles that are located in difficult footing, right on the water’s edge in some cases
  • improve the reliability of electricity supply to the Ravensdown processing plant, a major high-voltage customer. As part of the project, a switching station will be installed to manage its supply
  • improve safety with the removal of overhead power lines crossing over the railway tracks.

"Detailed engineering design for the project is complete and the work will now be coordinated in discussion with Dunedin City Council, Otago Regional Council and other landowners.

"Aurora Energy will also work with Heritage New Zealand to ensure required archaeological authorities are gained before physical works commence.

"Work on site will be organised to minimise disruption to recreational users and the Ravensdown plant. The start date will be confirmed after discussion with landowners and feedback from community stakeholders on preferred timing."

The estimated project value is $250,000.