DTE recently completed a major repair and upgrade of power cables under the Detroit River, greatly improving reliability for customers on Grosse Ile. 

Because electric energy is not generated on the island, power is delivered through cables, called trunklines, buried under the Detroit River. To ensure customers have the reliable power they need and deserve, crews replaced a damaged trunkline that delivers power to the island. 

What work was completed? 

This $14 million project used a trenchless construction technique to drill 60 feet below and 3,000 feet across the Detroit River. Crews then installed new conduit (waterproof casing that protects cables) and cables under the bed of the river. 

Furthermore, crews also upgraded additional vital infrastructure to improve reliability for island customers. While replacing the damaged trunkline, crews replaced another aging trunkline that will act as a backup source of power for Grosse Ile. Finally, as part of the project, crews installed new utility poles and wires and upgraded electrical equipment at the substation powering the island. 

“It was important that we not only repair the infrastructure that was damaged but also take this opportunity to update the other critical equipment that brings power to Grosse Ile,” said Angelo DiCicco, project manager. “This proactive approach will help us avoid major outages and ensure we’re able to deliver the reliable power that our customers need and deserve.” 

What benefits will I see? 

This work, which began in fall 2022 and was completed in December 2023, will provide several benefits for those on the island:  

  • Increased electric reliability, especially during extreme weather. 
  • Fewer outages and shorter outage durations. 
  • Greater grid capacity, which will allow us to deliver reliable power to even more customers on the island. It will also help us support your community’s growing energy needs. 
  • Quicker repairs and replacements of equipment. 
How can I see other work in my area? 

Upgrading work like this is part of our four-point plan to improve reliability for our customers. Other parts of the plan include trimming trees, rebuilding older sections of the grid and accelerating our transition to a smart grid. Learn more about work happening across our service territory at empoweringmichigan.com/reliability-improvements or by viewing our electric reliability improvements map