SONI to put local communities at the heart of major Mid Antrim Upgrade

17 July 2023

SONI, the electricity grid operator for Northern Ireland, has today launched a public consultation for the Mid Antrim Upgrade. This consultation builds on a previous round of consultation carried out by SONI in 2022. 
SONI is the transmission system operator for Northern Ireland. SONI doesn’t generate or sell electricity, but rather it plans and operates the electricity grid every second of every day to ensure power can flow from where it is generated to where it is needed.  
The Mid Antrim Upgrade is a high-capacity transmission system upgrade between the Kells and Rasharkin Main substations in County Antrim. This upgrade will reduce congestion on the electricity transmission line and pave the way for more renewable energy to be generated; its development is a crucial project to ensuring that 80% of the electricity we consume is generated from renewable sources by 2030 in line with targets set out in the Northern Ireland Executive’s Energy Strategy. 
Commenting on the consultation launch, Alicia Trainor, Project Manager with SONI said:  
“The Mid Antrim Upgrade will help to deliver a reliable supply of renewable energy to towns and cities such as Ballymena, Antrim, and Belfast, future-proofing electricity supply for years to come.  
“We want to work with local communities in the Mid Antrim area, who know their area best, as we move this project forward.” 
The twelve-week consultation launched today and lasting until Monday 9th October will give the local community and businesses across the Mid Antrim area the opportunity to share their views on the proposed overhead line route options and switching substation sites identified by SONI. The consultation process will see three public consultation events taking place throughout the locality. The consultation can also be viewed online by visiting the portal website at