PSE lining up cable replacement projects

Puget Sound Energy is working to reduce the potential for cable failure that would affect Bellevue residents with one replacement project underway and another ready for permitting.

PSE contractor Potelco was about 500 feet into boring along Northeast 28th Place, Northeast 29th Place and 172nd Avenue Northeast on Tuesday for Phase One of a project to replace aging power cables in the Parkhaven neighborhood.

"It looks like this job is about 1,700 feet of trenching or boring, which is six cables that we're replacing," said Jeremy Tuntland, project manager. "The cable that we're replacing now are about 30 years old now, and they're inferior cables, from what I'm told."

Amperage won't change, but the cable replacements could last up to 50 years. The addition of a conduit also will allow for easier replacements in the future, said Tuntland.

Once the conduit piping is installed, Phase Two will involve running the replacement power cables through them and decommissioning the old lines. Tuntland said that will likely occur between March and April and require a five-hour power outage.

PSE is also preparing to submit design plans to the city for permitting a cable replacement project in the Crossroads neighborhood. Tuntland said the project will replace 80,000 feet of aging cable and Potelco hopes to start work on the project within the next three months.

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