The City Snow Event Plan is initiated when

STAGE 1: Two inches of snow are on the ground and 4” more are expected in the current snow event.
STAGE 2: Six inches or more of snow are on the ground and more is anticipated during the current snow event.

STAGE 2 Downtown snow removal

Snow removal in the Downtown core will happen between 2 and 6am only, in order to effectively and efficiently clear the streets. All vehicles need to be off of the street during a declared snow event to allow for the passage of the City’s heavy snow removal equipment.

Downtown City snow removal procedures

  • The City will use chemical deicing treatments as soon as snow falls.
  • With heavy snow accumulation, the City will plow and berm to the center lane at night.
  • If snow berms are larger than one lane, do not melt after an extended period, impede safe pedestrian crossings, and cause traffic sight obstruction, the berms will be transported out of Downtown.
  • Downtown snow removal will be concentrated in the core first and then west end of Downtown.
  • If snowfall is so heavy that the City cannot keep up, it will transition to the “Snow Corridor Plan” where only major east-west/north-south arterials are kept clear.
  • Downtown’s major arterials are: Division and Ash/Maple and 2nd and 3rd Avenues.
  • The City will also make efforts to keep Sprague and Riverside clear to allow bus service to continue during severe snow events.

Snow removal window

The downtown snow removal window is the key part of the snow removal process. The 2-6am plow window will allow City plow crews to operate more easily because of reduced traffic and parking. If snow begins to accumulate in the early morning, crews will not be in downtown until the following morning. This is the most effective way to manage large quantities of snow in the downtown core while reducing vehicle gridlock resulting from City snow removal crews.