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Thursday, 24 March 2011 09:01

Electrical upgrades coming for city

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By John R. Statton
Swift Current
Work is set to begin to improve the city’s electrical system by completing five-kilovolt to 25-kilovolt conversions.

“It’s part of the conversion program and system improvement program that will be going on,” said Mitch Minken, director of Swift Current Light and Power.

Work is slated to start near the beginning of April, and will last from around six weeks to two months.

PMP Powerline Construction Ltd. won the bid for the project, which is set to cost $371,423. The price was included in the 2011 City budget. The contractor will change polls,
improves wire, general improvement work each year to ensure the system is up to grade.
The conversion program has been an ongoing project for the past 12 years.

Underground power lines

Overhead power lines will start to disappear from the downtown core starting next year. A conversion to underground lines is scheduled for the city’s downtown. The project is estimated to take five years for completion.

“It’s a major undertaking to get all those overhead power lines buried in a developed area like that, especially with trying to keep the businesses operating, and everybody being able to move with traffic and so on,” said Minken.

Areas to be affected include: North Railway St. to Herbert St. from Central Ave. and 1 Ave. N.W., between Central and First N.E., and between Central Ave. and 2 Ave. N.E.

In addition, Light and Power plans to continue with street lighting improvements around the city. The project began in 2010 with crews working on the west side of the 200 block of Central Ave.

“We did the one side of the street there as a pilot to see if we could do it without having to tear up the sidewalks and everything,” said Minken.
“We were able to come up with some work methods that allowed us to get new wire in the ground, and the lights into new positions.”

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