Saturday, June 7, 2014

150+ OUPS utility poles in Norwood, Ohio?

On Williams Ave. at
Hazel Ave., Norwood
Duke Energy has been aggressively replacing old utility poles in Norwood, Ohio with new ones. In many cases, the old pole has other utilities attached, typically Cincinnati Bell phone lines or Time Warner Cable cable lines. Duke's contractor cuts the top of the old pole off, leaving the other utility lines attached, and may mark "OUPS" on the old pole with white spray paint (see picture). OUPS stands for Ohio Utilities Protection Service and it means, in this case, that the pole is slated to be removed.

The other utilities move their lines to the new pole and then the old pole is removed. That's the plan, at least, and many times it works well. But here in Norwood it hasn't. I estimate that there are over 150 old, OUPS utility poles lining our streets.

I have embarked on a project to document these poles and report them to city officials so that they can take action. I have a lot on my plate right now and this is a low priority so it will likely take me at least a year to do this. I'm hoping that some of these poles will be removed before I finish my project. As I do, I will publish the results here; there is no reason not to make them public.

At the same time, I have noticed a set of steel utility poles on Montgomery Road that are rusting and need to be scraped and painted. Some are currently being used but many no longer have a use. As a related project, I'm going to document these and see if someone (the City of Norwood or Duke Energy) can repair or remove these eyesores.

It's all about improving the city that I live in.

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