Undergrounding Utility Lines

 Removing overhead utility lines is one of the most noticeable improvements a neighborhood can make. Wires, poles, and other equipment can obscure the beautiful scenery of our island community.

Undergrounding of utilities consists of placing overhead main lines and service lines -- including telephone, electric, cable television and other telecommunications -- underground in a trench.

The City of Alameda has had an underground utility program since 1984 and about half of the city’s overhead wires have been moved underground. But there’s still more work to do.

District Nomination Board Meetings

June 30, 2016 6 pm - AMP Service Center Meeting agenda and materials... Minutes
July 19, 2016 6 pm - AMP Service Center Meeting agenda and materials... Minutes
August 4, 2016 6 pm - AMP Service Center Meeting agenda and materials... Minutes
September 22, 2016 6 pm - AMP Service Center Click here for agenda and materials... Minutes
October 13, 2016 6 pm - AMP Service Center Meeting agenda and materials... Minutes
November 10, 2016 6 pm - AMP Service Center Meeting agenda and materials... Minutes
December 8, 2016 6 pm - AMP Service Center Meeting agenda and materials... Minutes

Sites Under Consideration for Undergrounding

  • Otis Drive (High to Broadway and south of Otis Drive)
  • Webster Street (All crossings – Central Avenue to Eagle Avenue)
  • Broadway (Buena Vista to Clement)
  • Broadway (La Jolla to Encinal; La Jolla)
  • Central Avenue (Eighth Street to Webster including Garden Way)
  • Fernside (Encinal to High Street)
  • Park St (San Jose to Otis)

Priorities for Selecting Underground Utility Districts

This list is a working list and no priority or approval should be assumed. Per the policy, the priorities for selecting underground utility districts is as follows:

To maximize public benefit, the two-tiered, prioritized criteria below will be considered when establishing or selecting areas for undergrounding overhead utility lines. However, under City Council direction, any area where overhead utility lines are located in streets, roads, or rights-of-way may be included in an Underground Utility District for engineering, operating, or economic reasons.

1. TIER 1

a. Road Classification - Aerial facilities located along and adjacent to six (6) classifications of roadway as defined by Public Work’s street classification system as having the greatest trip length, traffic volume and most through traffic. These classifications in descending order include: regional artery, island artery, transitional artery, island collector, transitional collector, and local.

b. Heavy Concentration of Aerial Facilities - AMP distribution poles supporting multiple connections to each pole, street crossings and visual impact.

c. Areas of Civic, Historical, Recreational or Scenic Interest - Aerial facilities that encumber the frontage or immediate surrounding proximity of civic, historical, scenic or recreational areas and whose presence degrades the natural beauty or environmental relevance of these areas.

d. Deteriorated Facilities - AMP distribution poles or aerial facilities that are nearing or exceeded their useful life as determined by AMP’s asset management and inspection program and are scheduled for replacement.

2. Tier 2

a. Foliage - AMP distribution poles and facilities that are encumbered by trees. Elements of consideration are tree density, height, projected growth, age, and resiliency to line trimming.

b. Coordination with other City Projects - Proposed underground district that encompasses or coordinates with planned and/or outstanding Public Works or other City department projects that would benefit from undergrounding.

c. Interconnectivity to Existing Underground - Proposed underground district would originate from and/or terminate into, existing underground facility(ies).

About the Underground Utility District (UUD) Nomination Board

Alameda’s District Nomination Board is recommending to a technical committee that overhead utility lines should be moved below ground in seven areas.

The board, which formed in June 2016 and completed its work in December 2016, reviewed dozens of areas before it voted to recommend the seven locations listed above.

The board was composed of four members of the public and one member of the Public Works Department. Its recommendations will now move to the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) for review. Public feedback will be sought before the TAC sends a list of proposed districts to the City Council for final approval.

After the public process is complete, AMP plans to start construction in the selected districts in fiscal year 2018.

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