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Snowboard policy to remain, but windrow clearing will end

Council tweaks District snowclearing policies

Along with hiring a working foreman to increase the District of Houston’s snowclearing capabilities, council has approved of changes as to snowclearing operations themselves.

Here are the key ones:

– In Priority One areas, snow clearing will now begin after 75 mm (three inches) of snow has fallen. The current accumulation is 50 mm (two inches) of snow.

West of Buck Creek, Priority One roads are from the District shop to West 5th to Tweedie to Mountainview Drive to Walker and turning around at the school, West 14th, Caledonia Ave. to the Houston Christian School and Hagman Crescent to Pearson to Olsson to Goold to Kanata to Hamblin Frontage.

East of Buck Creek, Priority One roads are Copeland from Hwy16 to 14th St. to Butler, Butler from Hwy16 to 14th St., Poulton from 9th St to 14th St., 11th and 12th and 13th Streets, 9th and 10th Streets with a loader only, Butler from Hwy16 to Riverbank Drive, Riverbank Drive from Butler to Omineca Way/Poplar St. and Equity Mine Road and Avalon Ave. to East Valley Road.

– the District will keep its snowboard policy which now calls for clearing to take place with three to five days of a significant snowfall as a Priority Three task.

District operations manager Chris Lawrence, in a comprehensive review of snowclearing operations, did suggest using a phased approach. “This would involve no new onboarding to the snow board program while permitting existing subscribers to continue receiving the service,” he wrote. “This item has no budgetary implications.”

A “snowboard” is the term whereby the District will clear the driveways of people who are infirm or otherwise physically unable to remove snow and who have no one else who can do the work.

– Clearing windrows — packed and accumulated snow — at the end of driveways created by the District grader, now called for as a Priority Three task, won’t take place anymore unless the windrows are considered challenging.

But windrow clearing will continue in the downtown core area as currently defined as a Priority One task.

– Council has also called for an increased emphasis on clearing sidewalks of snow and ice and has asked staffers to come up a schedule of which ones should have a higher priority.