Prior Actions

June 2020

Due to budget reductions brought by COVID-19, the Utility Undergrounding Project is suspended for the 2020-21 fiscal year.

May 2020

At this point, all work on the Undergrounding Project is on hold until the City Council has an opportunity to discuss the City’s overall budget picture for Fiscal Year 2020-2021 and provide direction.  Staff is looking at different options for potentially moving the project forward, but this will be for the Council to consider as they look at all the various pieces of the puzzle.  There will be a City Council budget workshop on Saturday, May 16th, but there will not be an in-depth discussion of the undergrounding project.  It’s possible that there may not be clarity until the June 15th City Council meeting, which is when the Council is expected to adopt an amended budget for FY 2020-2021.  Thank you for your patience as we work through this constantly-evolving crisis.

March 2020

The City Council on March 14 approved an emergency declaration to address coronavirus, cancelled all public meetings through April 6 such as the City Council’s March 23 meeting when the topic of the utility undergrounding was scheduled to be discussed in order to form the underground utility districts 1A and X1A.  Agenda items that had been scheduled for the March 23 City Council meeting, including those related to the utility undergrounding program, will be rescheduled as soon as possible.

Following the formation of these districts undergrounding projects in these areas will move into the design phase. Project design is anticipated to take up to 18 months for each district. Here’s what property owners and residents in the two districts can expect during the design phase: 

  • Neighborhood meetings will be conducted to provide residents with the opportunity to learn more about the UP and speak directly with members of the UP team (property owners and residents will be notified when these meetings are scheduled).

  • Staff from the City of Del Mar, utilities, and their consultants will be in the field to gather information on site-specific conditions.

  • Property owners and residents may be contacted directly by the UP team to discuss design issues that are specific to their property.  

  • Property owners in these districts are encouraged to begin exploring the process of installing private underground laterals on their property. More information will be provided to applicable property owners to help with this process and to explain timing. 

January 2020 

Together with the Undergrounding Project Advisory Committee, the City selected a specialty consultant team to help implement the Undergrounding Project. Utility Specialists and KCM Group will play an important role in the design process and will be working closely with SDG&E, the telecommunications companies, and property owners.   

Working with SDG&E and other telecommunication companies, the project team has been conducting field investigations to finalize the boundaries of the first two districts  in advance of City Council consideration. The field investigations have resulted in some refinements to the boundaries based on technical feedback from SDG&E and the telecommunications companies. A detailed map of each area will be produced that identifies all parcels that are included in each area.  

August 2019

The City Council reaffirms its commitment to citywide undergrounding and authorizes design work to begin for two project areas. 

April 2019

The City Council reviews the Undergrounding Project Delivery Plan (PDF) and discusses obtaining more cost information before authorizing a pilot project. Watch the April 15, 2019, City Council discussion.

January 2019

The City’s consultant, Lee & Ro, Inc., completes its first task order -- to prepare a preliminary project delivery plan. This first assignment included inventorying, assessing, and mapping existing overhead facilities; evaluating the construction readiness of several undergrounding projects (previously initiated by private neighborhoods); and preparing preliminary cost estimates (for planning and budgeting purposes).  After several weeks of data gathering and analysis, the consultant delivered the first draft of the Project Delivery Plan (PDF) for the City’s review.

October 2018

The City Council approves an agreement to Lee & Ro, Inc., to provide professional services including planning, design, engineering, and communication for the undergrounding effort.  The City Council also adopted several policy recommendations made by the Undergrounding Project Advisory Committee (UPAC). Click on the links under Reference Information below for the staff reports.

March 2018

Nine members are appointed to serve on the UPAC. 

August 2018

The UPAC will be providing recommendations to the City Council on how to approach this project. It is anticipated that the City will hire a consultant in November 2018 to help address questions related to phasing, prioritizing, and other associated policy questions pertaining to how to advance this project.

This is a complex and lengthy project. However, the Team is now working towards starting the project.  The UPAC has selected three sub-committees to break the project into smaller components and begin working on the issues.

December 2017

The City Council forms the UPAC to ensure the project moves forward in a timely manner and that its goals are achieved. The Committee is part of a Utility Undergrounding Project Team that includes City staff, neighborhood representatives, City Council liaisons, utility companies and utility consultants. See the staff report and committee charter establishing the UPAC (PDF).

April 2017

Measure Q sales tax collections begin. Receipts are estimated to generate approximately $2 million annually.

November 2016

Del Mar voters approve Measure Q, which adds one cent to general sales tax. Ballot language identifies citywide undergrounding as one of the uses for Measure Q revenue.

June 2016

A study by Utility Specialists Southwest, Inc. (PDF) provides cost estimates to underground all remaining utility poles within the City of Del Mar.