Towards the end of 2019, Vector awarded Electrix the Mt Albert Overhead Improvement Project (OIP), which involved our distribution team undergrounding power and phone lines, along with the installation of new streetlights for Auckland Council. Work on the project began in October 2019 and currently has a completion target of November 2020.
Electrix will install 8km of new underground cable, 3 new switch units, 4 new transformers, and new underground service mains to 203 homes. On completion of the project, all overhead lines and poles will be removed, and new footpaths will be laid across the project site.
The project involves 4.7km of open trenching in the berm to install duct, a large majority of which is being excavated through loose and solid volcanic rock under the footpath. This is particularly challenging as there is a solid rock shelf where the work is being carried out that varies in depth from ground level to 1.2m below ground level. The large trenching nature of the works - with 4.7km of trenching - has created new challenges for the team, who normally complete this work using directional drilling.
The dedicated teams have adjusted well to these ground conditions, and in the coming weeks we will be completing the first HV outage to liven the new underground network, along with laying the first of the new footpaths.
Electrix has engaged J&R Contracting to complete the civil works across the project site, and the company’s Infrastructure, Facilities and Transport business unit is supporting them with the undergrounding of private mains to homes.