Utility throws switch on unused property

In a rare move, Glendale Water & Power has put a piece of property that housed an unused electrical substation up for sale.

The 30,000-square-foot property bordered by homes at 3445 Altura Avenue in the northern part of the city was put on the auction block on Tuesday at starting price of $600,000, but there were no takers.

“Everybody’s kind of looking for the coins in the couch cushion,” said Kevin Todd, a project manager for Glendale Water & Power.

After no bites on the property on Tuesday, Todd said he was unsure what next steps were, but officials will likely take another look at the price and consider a possible reduction. A buyer could build a single-family home on the property, but could develop more than one property if the lot were subdivided, Todd said.

Glendale Water & Power equipment has been removed from the site, but the buyer would be responsible for tearing down a small block building and some gates.

The utility had planned to build a new substation on the property, but after upgrading infrastructure in the area, officials determined that a new substation was unnecessary. Instead, officials decided to auction off the property to make some money that could be used for other projects.

Glendale has several substations that convert high-voltage energy created at a power plant to lower voltage for customer use.

“This is quite a novel process for us,” Todd said. “This is the first time, in many people’s recollection.”

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