A SURVEY of Floreat residents about underground power installation will not go ahead after Cambridge councillors instead voted to consider it in the Town’s major project priorities over the next 10 years.
The council report states the project will cost between $26 million and $32 million, with an estimated cost of $8000 to $10,000 per housing lot.
Floreat and part of Wembley are the only suburbs in the Town of Cambridge without underground power, with the State Underground Power Program pilot completed in Wembley in 1998, north Wembley and West Leederville (2003), Daglish and Jolimont (2003) and City Beach (2006).
Mayor Simon Withers said underground power was a State Government responsibility and questioned whether the council should step in when the Government did not deliver.
“It’s funded by the State Government but managed by the councils,” he said.
“As a result, people tend to blame the council if they don’t have it.
“The funding is nothing to do with council. It’s to do with the State Government program. We’re trying to improve all our streets by putting more trees in the streets and we’re struggling to find $100,000 a year to do that.
“One of the questions people have to ask is what’s more important – trees or underground power?”
Cr Colin Walker said proceeds from the sale of the nursery site, Boronia Crescent and other projects, should be available for underground power. Cr Louis Carr said councillors should not underestimate how Floreat residents felt about underground power, describing it as a project that would “leave a lasting and positive legacy”.
Cr Sonia Grinceri said with a steady rollout and assessment of cash flow, the council could achieve underground power.