KENYA’S electricity parastatal, Kenya Power, is embarking on a project to install high voltage underground cables across the city of Nairobi. The regular occurrence of interference with the current overhead cabling system has necessitated the project.
Nearly 38 kilometres of underground power cables with voltage ratings of 220/66kV will be installed and connect the new city substation to six existing substations. The 66kV line will also be extended to connect new customers. The implementation of the underground cabling system is expected to reduce downtime and allow for more flexibility of the city’s distribution network.
The project is being financed by a $128million concessional loan from the Exim Bank of China. Kenya has been rapidly increasing electricity accessibility across the country over the past two years with electricity access rising to 64 percent from 27 percent in 2013. The underground cabling system is expected to further allow Kenya Power connect more customers across the city and will significantly reduce maintenance costs associated with the overhead system which is prone to interference from human and environmental factors. The project is scheduled to be completed at the end of July in 2017.