MNT: Vancouver (Mount Pleasant Substation)

From Horne Payne Substation in Burnaby, the additional cable would run underground via Vancouver city streets to Mount Pleasant Substation:

  • The cable would cross Highway 1 underneath East 2nd Avenue to Windermere Street using a trenchless construction method.

From Windermere Street the cable would be routed along East 8th Avenue, cross the Grandview Cut at McLean Drive and travel along East 7th Avenue, Fraser Street then East 6th Avenue.

See our photo metric satellite map [PDF, 1.6 MB] of the preferred route through Vancouver.

Crossing the Grandview Cut: a new walking and cycling bridge

We’re proposing a new walking and cycling bridge that would be built from North Grandview Highway to East 6th Avenue at McLean Drive to facilitate the crossing of the Grandview Cut. The bridge will improve walking and cycling connections for those using the Central Valley Greenway. It would also contain our new transmission cable, suspended underneath the structure.

The preliminary design for the 60 metre-long bridge features:

  • A 3.5 m cycling path and 2.5 m walking path
  • Lighting for visibility and safety
  • Seismic design for a 1-in-2,475 year earthquake

In August 2017, we held outdoor engagement events near the Grandview Cut regarding the proposed walking and cycling bridge. Read a summary of the feedback we received [PDF, 1.6 MB].

Preliminary rendering of the proposed walking and cycling bridge.
Preliminary rendering of the proposed walking and cycling bridge.

Frequently asked questions

We looked for a route that would minimize cable length and bends, avoid streets with high utility congestion, and avoid major arterial routes. East 8th Avenue was identified as the preferred route as it met the above criteria plus it provides direct access to North Grandview Highway where the power line will cross the Grandview Cut as part of a proposed cycling/walking bridge near McLean Drive. It also has the lowest risk of interaction between construction equipment and existing tree canopy and roots.

It is important to note that construction work will not start until we receive approval from the BC Utilities Commission on our application for Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity (CPCN). If approved, construction would start in 2019 at the earliest. Following is an overview of what construction on city streets would entail.

Undergrounding cable through city streets requires civil work to dig trenches and install duct banks below grade along the length of the road between manholes. Manholes will be installed every 800 metres of duct bank. Excavating, installation and backfill work is done on a block-by-block basis with each block taking approximately 5 to 8 days to complete.

Typical underground cable duct bank installation.
Typical underground cable duct bank installation.
Typical manhole installation.
Typical manhole installation.

Throughout the work traffic management personnel will be onsite to ensure public and worker safety. While two lane closures are required, work can be completed during non-peak traffic hours and access to driveways is maintained.

Cables are pulled through installed duct banks once civil works are complete. Cable pulling from manhole to manhole takes one week. Cable segments are then joined at the manholes which takes two weeks per manhole.

Typical underground cable pull.
Typical underground cable pull.

Through Vancouver, the horizontal placement of the cable underground will vary depending on existing underground utilities. Directly above the line, the expected magnetic field level is 120 milligauss. The magnetic field levels rapidly drop as the distance from the line increases. Considering residential setback in the area is 6 metre or more, normal residential exposure levels are expected to be less than 29 milligauss.

Distance from the centre of line (in metres) Magnetic field level (milligauss)
0 m 120 mG
2.5 m 70 mG
5 m 29 mG
10 m 9 mG
15 m 4 mG
20 m 2 mG


For more information on this subject, please see the Metro North Transmission - Vancouver magnetic profile [PDF, 82 KB].