Find information about utility undergrounding guidelines, benefits, various programs, related documents, contacts, and links.
Utility undergrounding is the process of replacing overhead power lines and other overhead utilities with underground power lines and associated utilities. Undergrounding has benefits, including:
- Possible reduced maintenance costs
- Improved utility reliability during severe weather
- Improved public safety
- Reduced fire risk
- Aesthetics/ Improved views
Neighborhoods can volunteer to self-fund utility undergrounding projects by forming a utility undergrounding district. For more information, please read the Underground Utilities Assessment Districts Guidelines For Prospective Neighborhoods or contact Public Works at email@example.com.
The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) and PG&E have a program for undergrounding utilities, commonly known as Rule 20. The rule allows for three different funding models:
- Rule 20A: Rule 20A projects are typically in areas of a community that are used most by the general public. These projects are paid for by customers through future electric rates, referred to as Rule 20A Work Credits. Future funding will no longer be available due to recent California Public Utility Commission (CPUC) revisions to the Rule 20A program that eliminates the accrual of Rule 20A Credits after 2022.
- Rule 20B: Rule 20B projects are usually done with larger developments. The majority of the costs are paid for by the developer or applicant.
- Rule 20C: Rule 20C projects are usually smaller projects involving a few property owners and the costs are almost entirely borne by the applicants.
The City is exploring funding options for utility undergrounding, and more information can be found in the Conceptual Study to Underground Utility Wires in Berkeley.
UUD #48 Community Meeting
January 12, 2022 0 Documents
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