Community, Public Safety, Syracuse, Weather

Department of Public Works Unveils Plan for Plowing City Sidewalks

Michael Greene in his office (c) 2018 Matt Dzenawager

Listen here to learn about the 20 miles of Syracuse sidewalks that are being designated as important areas for snow plows to clear. Michael Greene believes this years plan will help improve safety in the city.

Audio transcript: Snow Removal transcript 

By Matt Dzenawager SYRACUSE, N.Y. (NCC News) —  Syracuse Common Councilor At-Large Michael Greene and the Department of Public Works have unveiled their new plans to improve snow plowing operations on city sidewalks.

The DPW ultimately decided the best method is to identify “priority areas.” With the help of the Syracuse Metropolitan Transportation Council, they identified 20 miles of city sidewalks where there is heavy pedestrian traffic.

This year the plan will be funded by the existing DPW budget, but as the program progresses other financial resources may be needed.

“I think what we would need to look at is evaluating this program at the end of the year and seeing if it is something you would want to expand,”  Greene said “If it is something that is going to be expanded, then we’re going to need to figure out over the longer term how we are going to finance that.”

Greene said that there is no set plan on how they will evaluate the program. However, he imagines the Council will look at how quickly the private contractors were able to plow as well as how consistently they were able to do it.

Director of operations Corey Driscoll Dunham outlined the plan in front of the committee. One of Dunham’s main messages throughout the presentation was this process will be all about trial and error.

“This is going to be, you know to be completely honest a bit of a bumpy process for us to roll this out as a first step to see what lessons we’re going to learn,” Dunham said.

The committee also spoke about a new snow safety web page they plan to unveil as the winter months approach. The website will be modeled after a similar web page used in Montreal.

The plan is expected to go into full effect on December 1st and the success of the program will be evaluated at the end of the winter.