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Utilities Undergrounding Program

Utilities Undergrounding Frequently Asked Questions

When will my street have the overhead lines undergrounded and who decides which areas are undergrounded first?

In accordance with City Council Policy 600-08, the City Council approves the master plan for undergrounding. The master plan and the policy are available on our website:



Will this cost me anything?

In most cases, no. It is the legal responsibility of the property owner to underground from the street to their house or business beginning at the property line. However, the utility companies will perform this work at no cost to the property owner as long as the property owner signs an agreement to allow utility companies on to their property. Otherwise, property owners are required to perform this work at their own cost.

I have received a notification of a Public Hearing to underground the lines on my street. Do I need to attend?

You have the right to attend and to express your views regarding the project and your responsibility as a property owner within the Underground Utility District. However, you are not required to attend.

Once my street is selected, how long does it take to underground the lines?

From the time you receive notice that the Council has created an Underground Utility District, there will be a period of 12 to 18 months of design. You may see engineers working from time to time on your street. Once construction begins, most projects are completed in 18 to 24 months.

What companies or agencies are involved in the project?

The City of San Diego works in collaboration with SDG&E, AT&T, Crown Castle, Cox Communications or Charter and any other utility companies that are currently using the power poles, on all projects.

Are separate trenches required for each utility?

No. All utilities are required to utilize and shore a single trench.

Are streets left with trench marks following the trenching that takes place?

Following the completion of the undergrounding conversion, streets are re-surfaced or slurry sealed.