The big snow dump of 2018 is being shoveled away to make room for the big snow review of 2018.
Regina Mayor Michael Fougere is asking the city administration to examine all aspects of the current snow clearing system.
“Do we need to get at residential streets quicker in the cycle? Do we start the residential clearing of streets at 25cm or do we do it at less than that? Do we remove snow ridges from the front of people’s driveways or not?” Fougere explained at a news conference at city hall Monday. “Parking is another critical issue and bus service, people want bus service to be available as well.”
Fougere wants the work to begin immediately with the hopes of any recommendations being adopted in time for next year’s winter season.
“You know we just need to look at how we can make the service better,” Fougere stated.
Regina’s streets are cleared based on a priority street system. It prioritizes streets based on a category, with the major arterial roads, like Ring Road and Lewvan Drive done first, then out to collector roads and transit routes next. Residential streets are prioritized until the snow reaches 25cm or when time permits.
During the recent significant snowfall — an event not seen for roughly five years — one of the major criticisms from residents was how long it took for the plows to come out. The public and separate school system had to cancel student transportation for four days because school buses couldn’t get down the snow clogged residential streets.
But any changes that the administration proposes will largely come down to cost.
Currently the city spends approximately $9 million on winter maintenance each year.
“The administration will do the evaluation and say this is the budget implication and this is the policy changes that will come out of this,” Fougere said. “We want the administration to take a look at that and understand the budget implications for it and the prioritizing of work to get done.”