Electrical power will be shut off starting about 8:30 p.m. May 22 at some businesses on and around the 600 block of the State Street corridor and is expected to be restored by dawn the following morning, a Southern California Edison spokeswoman said.
Edison’s Rhoni Cuthrie said not all businesses in the area will lose power because the shut off is for some specific locations such as Night Lizard Brewing Co., 607 State St. Starbucks on the 500 block of State Street is closing at 8 p.m. May 22.
Since March 2017, Southern California Edison has been working on the Downtown Santa Barbara Reliability Project “to enhance the availability of reliable electric service to meet our customers’ needs in the downtown Santa Barbara area,” officials said.
However, Guthrie the May 22 operation is not a part of the Downtown Reliability Project. Property owners affected by the power shut down have been notified by mail, she said.
The multimillion-dollar improvement project “will result in a safer and more efficient, resilient and reliable power grid while reducing environmental impacts,” Edison officials said. In years past, the downtown area has been prone to power outages, such as those during flooding, and that has angered many business owners.
The target area is bounded by Haley, Sola, De la Vina and Garden streets. The work involves several separate projects on different circuits in the downtown area, officials said. That includes underground re-cabling, installing new vaults and switches and upgrades at multiple substations.
Once the project is completed in about two more years, it is expected that these efforts will decrease the frequency and duration of power outages in downtown. New technologies will be used to modernize the electrical grid, officials said.
During the project, some businesses and residents will be power outages. Edison said it will communicate with those affected in advance so they can make appropriate arrangements.
For more information, see https://www.sce.com/about-us/reliability/upgrading-transmission/dtsb