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Why are they replacing all the utility poles on Dunlap and Church? And what are those round wheels they are putting up near the top?

It’s part of upgrades Ameren Illinois is making along Dunlap Avenue and East Church Road in Savoy, spokeswoman Marcelyn Love said.

“(We’re) upgrading existing sections of the energy grid along Dunlap Avenue and East Church Road for the Champaign community. This work will improve the region’s energy reliability by replacing approximately 13 miles of 138 kV transmission line and structures with new infrastructure that will further enable the deployment of smart grid technology,” she said.

The wheels are dollies that are used to install the new wires “to the appropriate sag and proper tension before the linemen permanently connect the wire to the structures,” Love said. “After the wire is connected to the structures, the dollies are then removed.”

The construction is expected to be completed by December, with complete restoration wrapping up in the spring of 2021.

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