Each winter, our office receives a handful of emails and phone calls from residents after snow events wondering why their road had not been plowed, even though it is a snow route. There seem to be two issues causing confusion among citizens:
- The misconception that The City does snow removal; and
- When cars remain parked on streets, snow plows are unable to reach the curb in order to adequately plow the full roadway.
The importance of parking bans
All snow plows in the city are equipped with technology that tracks their progress on snow routes. This makes it easier for Roads to determine when they can lift a parking ban, rather than waiting out the entire 72 hour period when it is not necessary. Citizens are also able to access the Road Conditions Map
to track progress on any of the P1 or P2 routes.
The photo to the left shows what a plowed street looks like when vehicles have not been removed. As you can see, it is difficult for plows to weave between vehicles so that in the end, it appears that the road had not been plowed at all. This is why it is so important that we all do our part by adhering to parking bans during snow events.
This year, 10 km of Priority 2 roads containing on-street bike lanes were added to the Priority 1 list. This change was implemented to encourage alternate modes of transportation throughout the year, not just in summer months, and to increase the amount of people that cycle by enabling them to do so safely in the winter months.
The Snow Route program, as a relatively new program, is in a continual state of improvement as we learn from experience. During this latest parking ban, we noted increased compliance in comparison to last year that is likely the result of adjustments to some snow routes, better citizen understanding of the program and better communication by The City.
Please visit the snow routes page to learn more about snow route parking bans, or to subscribe to receive parking ban alerts.
Snow removal and snow clearing – what's the difference?
The misconception that The City does snow removal is very understandable. The difference between snow removal and snow clearing is that snow removal utilizes different kinds of equipment which actually removes the snow and takes it to another location. Snow clearing, on the other hand, shifts snow off the roadway and into gutters. Snow clearing is a far less expensive alternative to snow removal, because it requires less expensive equipment and uses less fuel because snow is not being hauled to another location after being removed.
The City does more than simply remove snow, however. Roads takes preventative steps by applying an anti-ice coating to major roads prior to a snow fall or freezing temperatures.
Learn more about The City of Calgary's Snow and Ice Control Program
This content represents the personal views and opinions of the Ward Councillor and should not be taken as a statement of policy of The City of Calgary. The inclusion of any external content does not imply endorsement by The City of Calgary.