Prompted by complaints, Burlington considers improved windrow clearing


Published March 27, 2023 at 1:41 pm

Windrows Burlington snow winter

Burlington is considering more options to clear windrows from residential driveways.

The snow piles, left after plows clear city streets after snowfalls, have become a headache for Burlington officials who deal with a steady flow of complaints from residents who often feel trapped when the windrows are left in front of their driveways.

A motion that is intended to eventually go before Burlington City councillors, asks the roads department to explore costs and options for an enhanced city-wide windrow removal program.

“The mayor and councillors’ offices have received a significant volume of complaints from residents about windrow clearing this year, partly due to the wet and heavy snow creating large chunks at the end of driveways when the plow has passed,” reads a report that will go before a City committee meeting this week. “Residents have shared that the size and weight of the windrows made it difficult if not impossible to leave their homes as they were blocked in and unable to easily remove the windrows. Residents have privately and on social media suggested a range of options to address the issue.”

Under current City operations, windrow clearing is provided to those who are physically unable to clear the snow themselves. The current program is limited to 175 homes and occasionally delivered to 200 residents under special circumstances. A fee may apply.

The motion that will be put before councillors will be to possibly increase the number of eligible homes to 500 and to consider other options. One such option, one that other municipalities are looking at, is the purchase of equipment that clears windrows after plows go through the streets.

“By asking staff to provide costs and options related to enhanced windrow clearing, council will be able to make an informed choice about which options are most feasible and include any associated costs or revenues in the 2024 budget,” the motion reads. “This will respond to community input asking for additional research around what can be done to improve windrow clearing.”





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