Residential plowing set to resume in Regina as warmer temperatures arrive

Click to play video: 'Residential plowing set to resume in Regina'
Residential plowing set to resume in Regina
WATCH: Snow and extreme frigid temperatures across Saskatchewan have been hard to ignore in recent weeks, but Tuesday’s warm-up was a much-needed break. – Jan 12, 2022

People in Regina who were hoping to see their residential streets plowed after multiple dumps of snow over the holidays will have to wait until Friday, city officials say.

Regina residents have been anxious for residential streets to be plowed, and a previous attempt to clean neighbourhood streets earlier this month had to be put on hold due to another snow event on Jan. 7.

Tyler Bien, seasonal roadways operations manager for the city, said residential plowing is scheduled to start again on Friday, once crews hope to have completed a systematic plowing over higher traffic areas.

“When we are completed that and once we are completed the subsequent cleanup of schools, transit stops and everything like that, we are going to be continuing with the residential plow,” Bien said.

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The city of Regina said it is dealing with more snow at this point of the winter than the average over the last three years and the snow ridges are starting to show it. Snow ridges is snow piled on the side of the road, left behind from plow equipment.

“Snow ridges are getting higher or wider and they are impacting the lane widths,” Bien said. “So we are going in with our crews and removing a lot of those snow ridges to allow for better driving conditions and adequate lanes for traffic to travel on.”

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And while rising temperatures don’t make the roads perfect, it does help.

“It allows our ice control material to actually work,” Bien said.

“When it was extremely cold out, we ran into problems with the salt not actually activating on the road,” he explained. “So there were slippery conditions, even though we were putting sand and salt on the road.”

Yet there is a downside to the weather warming, Bien added.

“It’s better for the icy conditions. However, a lot of that ice pack starts to soften, so you will start to experience rutting on roads. That’s why it’s imperative that we get this residential plow started again.”

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For those looking to take advantage of the warmer weather and get outdoors for some winter activities, skating will have to wait in Regina.

Iceville, the outdoor skating rink that has taken over Mosaic Stadium, has been cancelled for Wednesday and Thursday for maintenance that is now required due to the temperature change.

Multiple days of temperatures around 2 C or 3 C can challenge the ice conditions, said Tim Reid, president and CEO of Regina Exhibition Association Ltd.

It’s a change from a few weeks ago, when Reid said it was actually too cold.

“In all honesty over the Christmas holidays and the start of the new year, my comment was, ‘It was too cold to make ice.’ You actually couldn’t get out there because the ice was so brittle.”

But in the end, the warmer weather has brought smiles to many faces in the city.

Monica Totton, executive director for the Regina Early Learning Centre, said the kids she works with were thrilled with the warmer temperatures.

“It was a fury of excitement this morning when I showed up and all the children had just got off their bus and they were playing in the yard,” she said on Tuesday.

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“They were thrilled to be out there and you could tell there was a different vibe because their faces weren’t freezing.”

Click to play video: 'Winter driving conditions take extra attention, SGI warns'
Winter driving conditions take extra attention, SGI warns

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