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Large Volume of Snow Affecting Sidewalk, Bus Stop Service Standards

Thursday, March 27, 2014 (Halifax, NS) – Due to the large volume of snow that fell in the Halifax Regional Municipality since Wednesday morning, municipal and contracted crews have not been able to meet service standards for clearing the sidewalks and bus stops.

Every storm, HRM and contracted crews are responsible for clearing 950 kilometres of sidewalks and walkways and 3,600 bus stops across the municipality. All HRM and contracted crews are mobilized and will continue working until all the sidewalks and bus stops are clear and safe from snow & ice.

The overnight winter parking ban will be enforced from 1-6 a.m. Friday, March 28, to facilitate clearing efforts.

As per By-Law S-300 (http://www.halifax.ca/legislation/bylaws/hrm/bls300.pdf) HRM asks that property owners and businesses not pile snow from their properties on the sidewalks.

According to the service standards, with a typical snowfall, the crews’ first priority is to clear sidewalks on main arterials and in the Capital District, within 12 hours of the end of snowfall. Next would be sidewalks in school drop-off zones and along transit routes, within 18 hours of the end of snowfall. Crews then turn their attention to residential sidewalks and walkways, within 36 hours of the end of snowfall. Finally, crews aim to clear all intersections and bus stops, starting with the highest volume stops, within 48 hours of the end of snowfall.

Those same service standards note that in snowfalls greater than 30 centimetres, or in blizzard conditions, service levels may not be achieved.

Many areas in the Halifax region saw more than 40 centimetres of snow throughout Wednesday and overnight into Thursday. Although many streets are now passable, the large volumes of snow are causing challenges for sidewalk crews, particularly at intersections and sidewalks that abut multi-lane roads.

As always, residents are urged to travel with caution. Motorists and cyclists are also advised to be mindful of pedestrians who may be walking in the bike lanes or on the street in areas where they can’t access the sidewalk.

For more information on snow clearing operations and municipal service standards please visit www.halifax.ca/snow.

Source: Release

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