Underground Power Update

Published on Thursday, 25 June 2020 at 11:54:00 AM

At its meeting on Tuesday 23 June, Council approved proceeding with a pilot project through Western Power’s Network Renewal Underground Power Program in Eden Hill and Bassendean, north of the train line.

This pilot provides an opportunity for a large section of the Town to receive underground power, and all the associated benefits, at a fraction of the usual cost.

Under the usual State Underground Power Program, property owners are required to fund a minimum of 50% of the entire project cost.

In contrast, under this pilot, Western Power will be fully funding the capital portion of the project, covering all of Western Power's infrastructure along the streets up until the property boundary. Therefore, property owners will only be required to fund the connection from the property boundary to their own home.

The final estimated cost per household for installing underground power in the project area has been confirmed as $2,204 (plus or minus 10 percent).

This cost will only apply for a new underground residential consumer mains connection and will not apply to property owners who already have an existing underground connection. Following negotiations with Western Power, property owners receiving underground power won’t be required to make the first payment until late 2021.

For properties in the project area, the Town will include a service charge in its rates notices over three years, starting in 2021-22, with the option to pay by instalments from September 2021.

Eligible property owners may get a discount under the Local Government Rates Rebate Scheme.

Council has recently adopted a hardship policy and any property owners who are experiencing financial difficulty will be encouraged to contact the Town’s staff to discuss their situation.

The project will not include the undergrounding of any transmission assets (33kV and above).

Construction will take 12 to 18 months and is expected to be completed by November 2021.

As an added benefit, the Town will now be able to plant street trees in the newly under grounded area and re-use Western Power timber poles for future nature-based playgrounds.

For more information, visit

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