Little Bourke St reopens

Little Bourke St reopened on November 8 after a three-month closure for major security supply upgrades to the CBD’s electricity infrastructure. 

The street was closed to traffic through a section of Chinatown in August. CitiPower crews dug four-metre deep trenches through the area and installed about 3.3km of conduit tubes. 

Next year cables will be installed in the tubes, connecting the newly-built Waratah Place Zone Substation to the city’s power grid.

CitiPower’s head of major projects Marcus Olive said the complexity of the work, combined with the busy and constrained location, had made the latest stage challenging.

“Thank you to all the impacted traders and the community for their understanding and patience during this vital work,” Mr Olive said.

“The closure has allowed us to make huge strides in progressing this project that will have significant benefits for the broader CBD once it’s complete.”

The work is part of the $250 million Melbourne CBD Security of Supply project, which aims to ensure the CBD has “double backup” to protect supply lines against unexpected events such as extreme weather, fires, traffic accidents or infrastructure failures. 

Once completed, it would ensure the duration of a major power outage is limited to no more than 30 minutes.

The next stage of work will include the closure of part of Lonsdale St in early 2020.

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