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Alignment for proposed 400 kV transmission line

26 January 2006

Transpower confirms alignment for proposed 400 kV transmission line

Transpower has confirmed the alignment for the overhead section of its proposed new 400 kV transmission line between Otahuhu and Whakamaru.

Proceeding with the new transmission line is subject to Electricity Commission approval. Ahead of that decision, Transpower has been advised by the Government it can continue with the necessary processes to secure a route.

This morning (Thursday morning) Transpower began delivering information packs to the 297 directly affected landowners. These packs include detailed individual maps showing the alignment of the line and where towers would be sited. Full sets of maps will be distributed to local libraries and council offices.

The overhead section of the proposed 400 kV transmission line would extend for 186 kms and require 430 towers. It would also require the removal of the existing 147km long Arapuni to Pakuranga 110 kV line, including the removal of 460 towers on that line.

This week’s delivery of information to landowners is the latest stage in a public consultation process that began in October 2004, when Transpower announced two route options for the overhead section of a proposed 400 kV transmission line. Following public consultation a preferred route was announced in July 2005, together with an indicative centre-line.

Transpower Chief Executive Dr Ralph Craven says the task over the past six months has been to determine the exact path of the proposed transmission line within the identified route, including the location of each tower.

“Transpower has talked to many directly affected landowners about specific impacts on their properties, and where possible, we have taken on board their concerns. Together with ongoing engineering and environmental investigations, this has resulted in changes to over two-thirds of the original indicative tower locations.

“We appreciate the cooperation and assistance we have received from many of the directly affected landowners. Talking to Transpower has not in any way affected their rights under the Resource Management Act processes that are still to come.”
Under the RMA Act 1991, Transpower will be seeking to ‘designate’ the land required for the proposed transmission line. The designation will define the area, and the terms and conditions, under which Transpower can build, operate and maintain the new line. Transpower expects to lodge Notices of Requirement (NORs) with all seven councils along the route, in April 2006. The councils will then call for public submissions.

The Electricity Commission has indicated that by March 2006 it will make an interim decision on whether to approve Transpower’s proposal, with a final decision in June 2006. The Electricity Commission is comparing Transpower’s proposal with possible alternatives.

ENDS

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