30 months to substation upgrade completion

Mdu Nzimande, City Power's director of engineering operations, talks to residents after his presentation.

 

BERARIO — The first progress meeting about the Roosevelt substation upgrade, expected to be completed in two-and-a-half years, had a big turnout of residents seeking information, at the Berario Recreational Centre.

A fully packed hall waited in anticipation for the City of Johannesburg’s power utility, City Power, officials as well as the MMC for Environment and Infrastructure Services, Anthony Still.

At the meeting on 8 February, exactly a month after about 100 residents protested the outages outside the substation, officials said the upgrade would take 30 months, with a budget of R111 million allocated it.

The MMC for Environment and Infrastructure Services, Anthony Still, at the 8 February public meeting, explains to residents how the substation will be upgraded.

The MMC for Environment and Infrastructure Services, Anthony Still, at the 8 February public meeting, explains to residents how the substation will be upgraded.

Still said the upgrade had been in the planning phase for three years, and that the implementation phase is now beginning.

Mdu Nzimande, City Power’s director of engineering operations, presented the plan to residents.

“We are currently removing the failed 30 Mega Volt-Amp (MVA) transformer and replacing it with a new 45 (MVA). We are installing a mobile feeder board and have already completed the network reconfiguration,” he said.

Mdu Nzimande, City Power's director of engineering operations, gives a power point presentations about the upgrade of Roosevelt Park substation.

Mdu Nzimande, City Power’s director of engineering operations, gives a power point presentations about the upgrade of Roosevelt Park substation.

City Power also plans to transfer around 6MVA to the recently commissioned Beyers Naude substation. The entity cannot replace all underground cables at once, so this will take about five years. They can, however, test the cable distribution to find where faults are most likely to occur and replace that cabling.

 

Short-term plan until June this year:

  • Replace faulty interconnecting cables between Parkhurst and Roosevelt substations
  • Install high-voltage circuit breakers at Roosevelt substation
  • Accelerate capital project currently underway.

Long term plan over two-and-a-half years:

  • Invest R111 million over the 30-month period
  • Capital refurbishment.

Nzimande said that there will be planned power interruptions throughout the upgrade, however, Still claimed that the worst is likely to be over.

The substation experienced 27 major outages between July and December last year. The substation has seen cable theft, private infrastructure development damages in its network, and vandalism.

The new transformer at Roosevelt Park substation. Photo:Facebook/Amelia Bester.

The new transformer at Roosevelt Park substation. Photo:Facebook/Amelia Bester.

The substation currently has 165 MVA which will be upgraded to 180 MVA. The additional MVA would only help carry the load if another transformer burns. Still said there is no capacity problem, and that the substation could power the suburb for many years to come, adding that distribution of electricity is where the problem lies.

The new transformer arrived at the substation on 9 February.

  AUTHOR
Chantelle Fourie
Metro Reporter

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