Underground Power

The State Underground Power Program (SUPP) is a State Government initiative administered by the Public Utilities Office (PUO) at the Department of Finance.

Local governments can nominate areas to be converted to underground power. Each nomination is assessed against social, economic and technical criteria by the SUPP Steering Committee.

The program involves placing the overhead power lines in established areas underground. Since the commencement of the program, 55 major residential projects throughout WA have been completed and over 86,000 homes state-wide have received underground power.

City of South Perth SUPP projects

The City has had projects in Rounds One, Two, Three and Five. The last underground power project in the City was Salter Point, which commenced in October 2011. In total 89 projects from 27 local governments were received for Round Five.

In December 2015 the PUO announced that submissions were invited from local governments interested in participating in Round Six of the SUPP. The funding arrangement still required local government to contribute a minimum of 50% of the project cost. 

The City submitted all remaining six areas for assessment for Round Six funding. All areas share the same priority and are consistent with the City’s overall vision of having all overhead power lines placed underground throughout the entire area. In January 2017, it was announced that funding has been secured for three of the nominated areas:

  • Collier – all of the area bounded by Canning Highway, Ryrie Avenue, Blamey Place and South Terrace
  • Manning – all of the area bounded by Manning Road, Kwinana Freeway, Hope Avenue and Challenger Avenue
  • South Perth – all of the area bounded by Douglas Avenue, Canning Highway, Hovia Terrace and Mill Point Road.

In some instances, the defined project areas do not include the boundary streets.

What's next?

The City has nominated the local government contribution to Round Six as 80%. The average cost to the property owner (depending on area) has been estimated at approximately $6,300. Discounts will be available for pensioners and registered seniors and to owners of properties adjacent to transmission lines or where the full amenity benefit is not achieved because power infrastructure (excluding street lights) is still located on the verge.

It is anticipated that the City will commence the first of the projects in the 2018/2019 financial year. Each project area is expected to take around nine months to complete, with the City proposing to undertake the works over 2018/19, 2019/20 and 2020/21.

For more information about the State Underground Power Program, visit the Western Power website