Underground electric cable in View Ridge was buried directly in the ground from 1969 to 1974 using the technology and materials available at the time. As underground cables age, the protective insulation deteriorates. In 2009 and 2010, Seattle City Light tested and, where possible, injected the cable with silicon. The silicon injection process extends the life of the cable by at least 20 years. Approximately 60 percent of the cable that was tested was injected. The other 40 percent of the cable in the neighborhood was tested but found not suitable for injection. That 40 percent must now be replaced. The next step in replacement is installation of conduit. Seattle City Light is hiring a contractor to install conduit and associated work, including new electrical vaults; curb ramp installation and restoration, sidewalks, pavement, and landscaping. The final step will be pulling the cable into the protective conduit by Seattle City Light crews.
In 2012, test holes were drilled to determine the location of other utilities that are near where the conduit will be installed. The conduit will be installed by tunneling beneath the ground's surface. This method is called horizontal-directional drilling (HDD). HDD is much less disruptive to sidewalks and landscaping than open trenching. It is also a less expensive, faster means of replacing the electrical system. City Light's Resident Engineer will be on-site to monitor the contractor.
The original plan was to complete the installation of the conduit in 2012. Additional design and permitting requirements and staffing changes have caused the delay. The design process is coming to an end and the contract bid will start in May. City Light should have the contractor by July. The conduit installation project will begin shortly after that time and run for approximately six months. Installation of electrical cable by Seattle City Light crews will be scheduled at a later date.
The status of your electric cable may have changed due to the need to make emergency repairs since the original silicon injection project. A map showing the locations where new conduit and vault installations are necessary can be found here.
In the coming months, we will be sending you a project update and an invitation to a community meeting, which will take place in the early summer. The community meeting will allow you to meet the contractor, project manager, resident engineer, and have your questions answered.
Community meeting information will be provided in the coming months. Until then, if you have questions about this meeting, please contact Mark VanOss, Public Relations Specialist at (206) 684-3279 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Thank you for your patience as we work to provide View Ridge with a new and refurbished electrical system. We look forward to seeing you at the community meeting!
Bravo Environmental NW, Inc., working for Seattle City Light, will be in the View Ridge neighborhood the week of March 25 to pothole some areas in order to physically locate certain utilities in the street right-of-way. This information is needed to protect utilities during the electrical conduit installation project City described above. Beginning in summer 2013, a City Light construction contractor will install the conduit using horizontal directional drilling.
The work will not affect your house service line and power outages will not occur. The potholing may be noisy at times but will be restricted to the hours between 7am and 7pm.
We recognize our work may affect personal activities, and appreciate your patience. Thank you for your cooperation. For questions please contact: Emily Burns, Project Manager, 206-733-9972.