PSEG subcontractors are going to begin pulling an electrical conduit through an underwater tunnel from Shelter Island to Greenport Tuesday morning.
Work is expected to begin by 7 a.m. Tuesday and continue beyond the usual workday until completion, according to PSEG spokeswoman Elizabeth Flagler.
An initial conduit was pulled through in November and a third will be scheduled at another date, Ms. Flagler said.
There were originally three aged conduits serving Shelter Island. Two had failed with the third one still in place, in addition to a line that runs from the South Fork to Shelter Island, but it is capable of providing power to only a small part of the Island.
With concerns that its failure would leave most of the Island dependent on portable generators, a cable project from the North fork to the Island was launched by Long Island Power Authority and a subcontractor in 2013.
But that project failed and had to be abandoned.
Once PSEG took over the LIPA operations in this area, exploration began on possible solutions. Islanders objected to building a substation here and PSEG operatives began looking for another site on the North Fork where they could launch a project similar to the one that had been undertaken in 2013.
Greenport Village agreed to allow the cables to come up at the southern end of Fifth Street and it will eventually hookup to a Southold substation.
In exchange, the Village is to receive a $30,000 easement fee; a $1.3 million access fee; and an overhead circuit reinforcement that will enable the Village to regain electricity more quickly any time it loses power.
Work was being done Monday night to fuse pieces of the conduit to prepare for today’s work in pulling it through.
“We’re ready for the big day and we’re excited,” said Shelter Island Heights Property Owners Corporation General Manager Stella Lagudis.
For the past week, traffic has had to be rerouted at times to handle construction near North Ferry and so far it has resulted in only minor slowdowns. That work, covering about 2,700 feet along Summerfield Place to Clinton Avenue and onto Chase Avenue, is expected to continued for another few weeks.