Pioneer Trail Wind Farm open house

Visitors pack a tent as officials with E. On Climate & Renewables  hold an open house at Pioneer Trail Wind Farm outside of Paxton, Ill on Thursday, Oct. 20, 2011. E. On officials, with some help, later ceremoniously pushed the buttons, seen in foreground, to power up several turbines in conclusion of the event. 

Company withdraws cell tower proposal in Champaign

CHAMPAIGN — T-Mobile has withdrawn a proposal to erect a cell tower near Carrie Busey Elementary school in south-central Champaign.

In a letter to Champaign officials on Wednesday, a consultant representing T-Mobile said the company has changed its mind after discussing the plan for about a year and a half.

Urbana school board votes 4-3 to stop talks on cell tower

URBANA — School board members voted 4-3 Tuesday to end negotiations on a proposed 150-foot-tall cell tower between the indoor aquatic center and Urbana Middle School, after overwhelmingly negative comments from audience members.

The issue had been debated about eight months.

Urbana School Board nixes proposed cell tower

Urbana School Board nixes proposed cell tower: Play now!

A proposed cell phone tower on the Urbana School District campus is no more.  WDWS news reporter Tim Ditman has the story.  Click the "play" icon to listen.


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Cutting energy use a priority for Champaign

CHAMPAIGN — Think your home energy bills are rough? Try powering an entire city.

Taxpayers in Champaign spend tens of thousands of dollars every month to keep the city running. There are the obvious costs, like heating, cooling and lighting at the police department, fire stations and City Building. On Oct. 6, the city paid a $5,834.41 power bill for the library.

LED inventor Holonyak joining hall of fame

URBANA — A University of Illinois inventor will join Thomas Edison, Enrico Fermi and the Wright Brothers in a very exclusive club.

Nick Holonyak Jr., who invented the LED, will join the scientists and inventors inducted into the Engineering and Science Hall of Fame on Nov. 3.

Computer project uses media coverage to see political patterns

Kalev Leetaru wants to forecast political crises, like a meteorologist does the weather.

The assistant director of text and digital media analytics at the University of Illinois Institute for Computing in Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences, Leetaru said his supercomputer project can't predict uprisings and downfalls.

Champaign tests credit-card parking meters downtown

CHAMPAIGN — If you have ever been short on change for the parking meter in downtown Champaign, that could become a problem of the past with new technology city officials will begin testing today (Thursday, Oct. 13).

Champaign County Humane Society named finalist in web makeover contest

     The Champaign County Humane Society has been named a finalist in a website makeover contest being sponsored by a central Illinois web company.
     LRS Web Solutions, of Springfield, is sponsoring the "Big Website Makeover" contest.

Costs for high-voltage line skyrocket

CHAMPAIGN — What a difference 21 months makes.

In January 2010, Ameren Illinois estimated that the cost of building a 9.8-mile-long high-voltage line across southwest Champaign would be $14 million.

On Tuesday, Ameren Illinois spokesman Leigh Morris said the estimated cost of that "preferred" route had risen to $23.8 million.