In order to reduce the overall financial impact of the ordinance on the utility ratepayers, in the revisions adopted by the Anchorage Assembly, provisions were made for utilities to choose projects that have benefits that are not just aesthetic. Therefore, following the direction of the ordinance, Chugach has determined projects essential to the continued reliable operation of the electrical system by reviewing its system outage data, results from an ongoing inspection program, load growth analysis and target areas.
Chugach's undergrounding projects are intended to implement one or a combination of five (5) main objectives. These objectives are listed in order of priority; however, the priority of a project can change depending on the specific project and how it relates to maintaining the integrity of the Chugach system.
- Safety: These projects will improve the safety of our system by retiring overhead facilities as they are identified where clearances or strength requirements are less then mandated by the National Electric Safety Code (NESC). Lines over residential houses or buildings, although not necessarily a code violation, pose a potential safety concern and will attempt to be relocated underground as part of this plan.
- Non-reimbursable Portions of Relocation Projects: State and Municipal road projects often include the relocation of existing utility facilities at the expense of the road project. Under this category, Chugach will fund any betterment undertaken by the utility embedded within the relocation work or add small system improvements that may lie just outside of the scope of the road project but that are ideal to construct at the same time.
- Load Growth Improvement: Existing overhead facilities are sometimes insufficient to handle the additional load of a large commercial or residential development. Instead of reconductoring an existing pole line with larger conductor, these projects will install larger underground conductor and retire the overhead facilities.
- Reliability: Chugach realizes the need for reliable electrical service and on an ongoing basis analyzes the system to ensure this reliability remains at an acceptable standard. These projects include loop closures to provide an alternate feed for radial underground circuits. Some areas have higher numbers of wind related or tree related outages. These areas may benefit by retiring overhead systems and replacing them with underground facilities.
- Target Areas: Existing overhead facilities located in target areas as defined in the section "Designation of Target Areas of Title 21.90.060C." The target areas emphasize locations that would benefit significant numbers of people. Some of the areas specifically listed are: central business areas, major traffic corridors, parks and recreational areas, and school and university areas.
The list of undergrounding projects to be performed in the years 2017 to 2021.
The Complete Undergrounding Plan contains the project summary sheets and maps of the project location. The PDF will open in a new browser window.