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Days before streets cleared of snow: City of Saskatoon

Click to play video: 'Days before streets cleared of snow: City of Saskatoon'
Days before streets cleared of snow: City of Saskatoon
WATCH: City of Saskatoon officials said that while the focus remains on clearing priority streets, crews are also tackling snow-clogged residential streets – Nov 12, 2020

City manager Jeff Jorgenson said all hands are on deck as Saskatoon continues to dig out from a weekend snowstorm that dumped 30 to 40 centimetres of snow on the city.

He said people typically have mobility within 72 hours of a storm, but that is not that case this time.

Read more: Wheelchair users urge proper sidewalk clearing after Saskatchewan snowstorm

“With these levels of snow, it’s a different story. It’s not just an inconvenience, it is a mobility-crippling event for many vehicles on our roads,” Jorgenson said Thursday.

“This is not a typical storm and not a typical storm cleanup operation.

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While the focus remains on clearing priority streets, crews are also tackling snow-clogged residential streets.

Jorgenson, however, said that will take a number of days.

“We are estimating that we will be able to get through the most needed streets in all neighbourhoods within nine days,” he said.

“By most needed, we’re going to try and prioritize based on the hardest hit with snow blowing — the streets that are most blown-in or most impassable — and also the streets that provide the most impact to citizens.”

Read more: Bus services cancelled as classes resume at Saskatoon schools Nov. 12

Jorgenson said those streets include ones that feed out to major collectors and bus routes.

“I’m actually very optimistic that at the rate I’m seeing contractors come on and at the rate I’m seeing neighbourhoods get addressed, I believe we can even achieve that goal in less time than nine days,” Jorgenson said.

Crews have completed Kensington and had 50 per cent of Stonebridge done as of Thursday morning, said Terry Schmidt, the city’s general manager of transportation and construction.

“Work continues 24 hours a day on improving mobility on residential streets,” he said.

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“Contractors are going into Evergreen, Brighton, Hampton Village, Montgomery and Rosewood residential streets (today).”

Removing all the snow comes at a cost and Jorgenson said it will impact the snow-removal budget.

“We’ve got $3.6 million in our stabilization reserve just for snow, so that’ll be a good start for sure, but it won’t cover what we’re talking about,” Jorgenson said without putting a cost on the current snow-removal efforts.

“That will be one of the first things that we take to the new council is funding strategies and options for the operations that we’re talking about.”

Click to play video: 'Residential streets to be cleared as Saskatoon continues cleanup from snowstorm'
Residential streets to be cleared as Saskatoon continues cleanup from snowstorm

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