Major projects

The Northern Territory is growing and Power and Water is committed to matching demand from the growing residential, business and industrial community with reliable power, water and sewerage services.

We live and work in a tough environment with extremes in weather and climate. It is an ongoing challenge to get services ‘on the ground’ where they are required and to meet current and future demand. Major refurbishment, replacement and upgrades as part of the current infrastructure investment program are outlined below.

Electricity distribution | Remote major projects | Water supply | Sewerage services

Electricity distribution

  • Replacing the 66kV outdoor switchyard at Casuarina Zone Substation involved the installation of indoor 66kV Gas Insulated Switchgear (GIS) in a new building and three new 20/27MVA 66/11kV transformers to replace the outdoor 66kV switchgear and transformers. Construction commenced in October 2015 with commissioning completed in 2017.
  • Connecting Archer Zone Substation to Palmerston Zone Substation - Power and Water is finalising construction of a 66kV transmission line connecting Archer Zone Substation to Palmerston Zone Substation. Construction of the new transmission line will increase the capacity, security and flexibility of the electricity transmission and distribution networks servicing the growing Palmerston and rural areas.
  • Elizabeth River Transmission Line Crossing - To improve security of the Darwin/Katherine electricity supply transmission line six towers at the Elizabeth River crossing were replaced with towers rated to withstand a category 4 cyclone event. The 132kV electrical cables connected to the towers crossing the river were also replaced. Project civil works commenced in May 2016 and three of the six towers were constructed by 31 August 2016. Works ceased over the 2016/2017 wet season and recommenced in 2017 with the project completed in November 2017. Elizabeth River was closed intermittently while the high voltage cables were replaced.
  • Hudson Creek Switchyard - Stage 3 upgrade works were completed on 30 August 2016. Three 132kV circuit breakers were replaced in 2014 (Stage 1). The remaining three 132kV circuit breakers were replaced and the switchyard partial reconfigured in 2015 (Stage 2). Stage 3 was the final stage of the upgrade works to replace protection relays and complete the reconfiguring of the switchyard. As with previous stages works were scheduled during the dry season, when demand on the power system is at its lowest, making it the optimal time to de-energise the transmission lines and with minimal risk of power interruptions. Works took place in three parts and were designed to improve the reliability of the network and increase operational flexibility. No power interruptions were experienced as a result of these works.
  • Darwin Zone Substation was officially opened on Monday 11 April 2016. It was built to replace the City Zone Substation that had reached the end of its economic life. The new substation comprises indoor 66kV Gas Insulated Switchgear (GIS) as opposed to the traditional outdoor 66kV switchyard. It is no longer exposed to outdoor environmental factors such as direct lightning strikes, high winds with the potential of debris impacting structures that can cause interruptions to power supply. It also ensures a protected environment from dust and extreme weather, while reducing noise and providing greater security.
  • Construction of the 11,000 volt (11kV) feeder to Chin Quan Road in Darwin was completed in April 2016. This feeder gives greater stability and reliability to the electricity network for the Larrakeyah and The Gardens areas. The new underground feeder runs from the Mitchell Street switching station in the Darwin CBD to Chin Quan Road, The Gardens. Works were completed in four stages:
    • Stage one, installation of underground conduits in a shared trench along Gilruth Avenue from Kahlin Avenue roundabout to Chin Quan Road.
    • Stage two, construction of underground conduits from the Kahlin Avenue roundabout to the Mitchell Street switching station, along Smith Street and Daly Street, using horizontal directional drilling and trenching.
    • Stage three, installation of the 11kV electrical feeder cables from the Mitchell Street switching station to Chin Quan Road.
    • Stage four, changes to the electrical panel at the Mitchell Street Switching Station.
  • Construction of Leanyer Zone Substation in Darwin’s northern suburbs is complete. Installation of electrical equipment commenced in early 2014. Works to connect the substation to the electricity network took from 26 September to 2 October 2015. The substation was fully operational in the first half of 2016.
  • Lovegrove Zone Substation to Alice Springs CBD 11kV feeder – Installation of a new electrical feeder to increase the reliability and security of electricity supply to the Alice Springs CBD was undertaken by Sitzler Bros on behalf of Power and Water. The works involved installation of electrical cable, underground from Lovegrove Zone Substation, along Kennett Court, and under the railway corridor from Kennett Court to Ghan Road, where it connects to the new overhead lines already installed. Works were completed in November 2015.
  • Components of the electricity network at Jabiru were outdated technology and had reached end of life. These components have been replaced to provide stability and flexibility to the electricity network in the town. Works took place between November 2014 and June 2015, in four stages:
    1. Construct a new ring main and line between the industrial estate line and the construction/FIFO camps line to provide an alternative supply route to the areas, giving greater flexibility to network operations.
    2. Replace the aged 11kV cable supplying the Jabiru CBD to ensure security of electricity supply to the area.
    3. Replace ring main units giving the flexibility to enable switching and isolation of supply routes.
    4. Replace high voltage switchboards feeding residential areas to enable switching and isolation of supply routes.
    The Jabiru electricity network is an island network, which means it operates in isolation from the Darwin-Katherine network. Jabiru’s power is supplied from the Ranger Uranium Mine Power Station, owned and operated by ERA Resources. The electricity network is owned by the Jabiru Town Development Authority (JTDA) and operated by Power and Water Corporation. These works were funded by the Jabiru Town Development Authority.
  • The replacement of one 132kV circuit breaker at Pine Creek commenced on Monday 27 October 2014 and was completed on 6 November 2014. The works to replace aging equipment were necessary to give greater stability and reliability to the electricity network. As with the works to replace three 132kV circuit breakers at the Hudson Creek Switchyard in July/August 2014, there was a risk of power interruptions. For the duration of the works the Katherine/Pine Creek network was supplied from Territory Generation’s Katherine Power Station, operating independently of the Darwin network.
  • The Frances Bay Zone Substation is in the second stage of development. A second 66kV circuit will supply the zone substation. A second power transformer and 11kV switch board extension are being installed along with 66kV GIS. This is was completed in late 2014. The substation has been designed for increased capacity and will ultimately accommodate three incoming 66kV circuits, three zone transformers plus associated 66kV GIS and 11kV switchgear. This is stage three of the project which is expected to be completed in 10 to 15 years.
  • The new Woolner Zone Substation is now fully commissioned. It replaces the Snell Street Zone Substation in Darwin. The Woolner Zone Substation introduces 66kV Gas Insulated Switchgear (GIS) into the power networks system. The 66kV GIS is proven technology that addresses the Northern Territory’s harsh local environmental conditions. The equipment is fully enclosed indoors as opposed to the traditional outdoor switchyard. Woolner Zone Substation provides electricity to Winnellie, Ludmilla, Stuart Park and Parap as well as support to the City, Berrimah and Casuarina zone substations.
  • The Archer Zone Substation project is complete and supplying electricity in Palmerston and the new suburbs of Mitchell, Johnson and Zuccoli while also providing some support to East Arm Port area. During construction a second 66 000 volt transmission line was installed to provide a future secure supply route from the new Weddell Power Station to the greater Darwin region.
  • Upgrade works to McMinns, Weddell and Palmerston zone substations together with additional distribution feeders are either complete or well underway. They will provide power supply to the Inpex accommodation village at Howard Springs and construction power supply for the Inpex gas plant site at Blaydin Point.
  • Installation of a new 22kV switchboard for Manton, Acacia and surrounds, approximately 65km south of Darwin, is complete. The 22kV Siemens switchgear is housed in a cyclone coded modular building that was assembled and installed in Darwin before being transported to site.
  • Over the next five years the rural zone substations at McMinns and Humpty Doo, will be rebuilt. Detailed design work is in progress for the new Strangways Zone Substation that will replace McMinns Zone Substation. Construction is scheduled to commence in January 2014.
  • The Undergrounding Power Project has connected properties in Nightcliff, Rapid Creek and Millner to an underground power supply.

Remote major projects

Indigenous Essential Services provides electricity, water and sewerage services in remote communities across the Northern Territory, from the deserts of Central Australia to islands off our tropical north coast.

Significant investment is taking place in the regions to ensure services continue to meet growing demand and improved services.

  • Solar Energy Transformation Program - Power and Water is building on 20 years' experience incorporating solar energy technologies into remote and regional communities.
  • Maningrida sewer upgrade works - Maningrida has been recognized as a Major Remote Town and in anticipation of future growth, Power and Water has commenced upgrading the existing sewerage system.
  • Galiwin’ku sewerage infrastructure upgrade - Power and Water is extending the gravity sewerage system in Galiwin’ku (Elcho Island) by approximately 1.2km.
  • Yirrkala water storage tank upgrades - Power and Water has replaced the two ground level tanks (GLT) which had a holding capacity of 180kL and 450kL. The tanks have been replaced with two new stainless steel storage tanks both having a capacity of 760kL.
  • Advanced water treatment - A number of communities we service have naturally occurring elements that affect the appearance and taste of the drinking water supply. This project has delivered more appealing drinking water to three communities.
  • Solar power for Ti Tree, Kalkarindji and Alpurrurulam - Almost one megawatt of renewable energy systems has been installed in these three remote Indigenous communities. The flat-plate solar photovoltaic systems provide up to 80 per cent of the communities' daily power needs.
  • More water for Warrumiyanga - A $4.3m water supply system upgrade at Warramiyanga (Nguiu) has ensured the community has enough water to meet future needs. Two additional water supply bores have been established and a 1.8 million litre water storage tank constructed on a hill outside town.
  • Prepayment electricity meter replacement - Power and Water is upgrading the prepayment meters currently used in remote communities. The current AMPY prepayment meters are used by approximately 5000 remote community and 2000 urban customers.

Water supply

  • West Lane elevated water tank refurbishment - Power and Water is renovating the Darwin City West Lane water tank between late February and July 2018.
  • Palmerston water pressure management - Power and Water is making changes to the water network in Palmerston, which will result in a more stable and consistent water supply during peak periods and help to reduce water loss.
  • Howard River Park water mains replacement - Power and Water has commenced a program of works to progressively replace the Howard River Park water main to improve water supply reliability.
  • Borroloola water treatment upgrade - Power and Water is upgrading the Borroloola water treatment plant to ensure high quality, safe drinking water continues to be delivered to the local community. The upgrade will secure Borroloola’s water supply systems for the next 30 years. This project also incorporates the ability to service Garawa town camps in the future.
  • CBD transmission water main - Bagot Road to the Parap Water Tank - Power and Water Corporation is constructing a new transmission water main along Stuart Highway from Bagot Road to the Parap Water Tank. This water main upgrade will allow for future growth in adjacent suburbs and the Darwin CBD. These works involve some partial road closures, tree removal and the presence of heavy machinery. The estimated completion date for Stage 1A is January 2016. For further information go to
  • Vegetation Management Program - Water mains are vulnerable to damage from vegetation growing near, over or under above ground pipelines. Root invasion, tree trunks rubbing on pipe surfaces and large debris falling on water mains cause breakage, rusting and splitting requiring expensive and time consuming repairs. The vegetation management program is undertaken on a regular basis to protect the major water mains that deliver Darwin's bulk water supply.
  • Darwin CBD water supply enhancement - Darwin's central business district is growing rapidly and new water mains are needed to meet demand. Power and Water has installed 1.2km of pipe along the south side of the Esplanade and Daly Street, and 2km of mains has been installed along Dinah Beach Road, Duke Street, Burt Street, Day Street and McMinn Street. This project will ensure continuing water supply to the CBD, Stuart Park and surrounds.
  • Raising the full supply level of Darwin River Dam - The full supply level of Darwin River Dam has been increased by 20 per cent with the raising of the dam spillway by 1.3 metres. This work has increased the capacity of the reservoir, which supplies Darwin, Palmerston and surrounding rural areas. The project was finalised with works on the intake tower in 2011.
  • Manton Dam water quality sampling project is ongoing. The project involves the release of water from the dam to the Manton River, and a program of water quality and environmental monitoring. The project will assist Power and Water in its understanding of the behaviour of the reservoir and the variability of water quality.
  • Alice Water Smart - A project designed to preserve Alice Springs’ finite groundwater source and secure the long term sustainability of the town. The aim is to reduce water consumption by Alice Springs’ residents by 1600 million litres per year, equivalent to two months average water supply. The Alice Water Smart Plan included home and business water audits, an expanded rebate scheme, smart irrigation for parks and ovals, improved water management and increased recycling and installation of smart meters to allow homes and businesses to monitor water use.
  • Palmerston South Elevated Water Tank - As part of the ongoing strategy to secure the water supply for the growing population of the City of Palmerston and adjoining rural areas, a new elevated water storage tank has been built. The new elevated water storage provides supply to the eastern suburbs of Zuccoli, Johnston, Bellamack and Palmerston South as well as potential interim supply to areas of Howard Springs.
  • Adelaide River Water Treatment Plant - Power and Water constructed a new water treatment plant at Adelaide River to provide a more reliable water supply and improve the quality of drinking water to the township. The plant is located in the existing Power and Water compound and became operational in late 2015.

Sewerage services

  • Leanyer Sanderson Inlet Works Upgrade - Power and Water has commenced the $16.2 million inlet works upgrade at the Leanyer Sanderson Waste Stabilisation Ponds to improve sewage treatment at the facility.
  • Palmerston sewer upgrade - Power and Water is building a new $10 million sewer main under three Palmerston suburbs to service the growth of a number of nearby sub-division developments coming on-line.
  • Construction of Humpty Doo sewage pump station and rising main - Power and Water has delivered new infrastructure to support growth in the Humpty Doo district centre and immediate surrounds. A new sewage pump station and rising main pipeline has been constructed in the Humpty Doo industrial/commercial area to service developments coming on-line from Lot 5546 Strangways Road and Lot 3 Freds Pass Road, Humpty Doo.