October 27, 2015 - 6:30 PM
KELOWNA - With last January’s near-record snow storm on their minds, the city is going to institute something that’s been the norm on the Prairies for decades — snow routes.
“One of the biggest challenges staff face during snow cleaning efforts is vehicles on local residential streets,” public works manager Darryl Astofooroff says in a report to council. "Parked vehicles can slow down or inhibit snow clearing operations, may cause plowing-in of parked vehicles and increase the risk of damage to vehicles."
The storm dropped 37 centimetres of snow in and around Kelowna over two days the first week of January — the city calls it an 'extraordinary snow event' — and severley impacted the neighbourhoods of Magic Estates, Wilden, The Ponds and Dilworth Mountain. That's where these intitial snow routes will be located, although the city isn't ruling out designating other routes in the future.
According to Astofooroff, the mountaintop neighbourhoods were selected because of their elevation, number of cul-de-sacs and previous experience with problems removing snow there.
Snow route signage for the four neighbourhoods will cost $10,000.
The routes are part of a larger package of changes to snow removal operations, which will include a call centre to handle the volume of calls during big storms, improved public communications and having more standby rental equipment on-call.
The city plans to meet with the province over snow clearing on Highways 97 and 33, which is handled separately by contractors for the highways ministry. Having different contractors handling different areas creates a service and communications gap that has created problems during past storms.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2015