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Possible Changes to Snow Removal in Rochester

August 12, 2019 10:45 PM

(ABC 6 News) - Whether we want it or not, winter is coming. Even though it's months away, now is the time to plan and prepare. 

At Monday’s Council Study Session, Rochester Public Works brought forward proposed changes to several snow removal ordinances.

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The first ever Seasonal Parking Restriction calls for drivers to park on even numbered streets on even numbered days and odd numbered streets on odd numbered days between 2 a.m. and 3 p.m. starting October 1st.

“It's increasingly difficult to be able to perform all of the maintenance tasks that we need to do and safely get emergency services up and down our streets,” said Chris Petree, the Director of Rochester Public Works.

Another suggestion prohibits homeowners from pushing snow into the road and alleyways. Public works officials clarified if the snow came from the street, it can go back onto the street. If it came from a property, that's a violation.

The department also wants to prohibit people from piling snow so high drivers can't see over.

“If we create safety hindrances or sight line issues we are aware of those things and we can put those on our list to come and clean up as time permits,” said Petree. “What we are not as aware of is if property owners create those safety situations.”

For those who live by (or own a business on) a corner, Public Works is looking at making it mandatory to clean off pedestrian ramps.

“The reality of it is, a pedestrian ramp is part of a sidewalk so it ultimately becomes the responsibility of that property owner,” said Petree.

“Any of those little turbulences in walkways could actually introduce some pretty significant hurtles for people trying to get around,” said Councilman Nick Campion with the City of Rochester. “Everyone wants the sidewalks to be walkable, everyone wants safe ways for people to walk around their neighborhood … but we also have to be thoughtful about what the impacts are to making changes like this.”

The changes will need to go before City Council before the fall.
 

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