With the snow here to stay, one Edmonton city councillor is pushing for change when it comes to the timeliness it’s removed.
Ward Nakota Isg Coun. Andrew Knack took to social media on Saturday to say, “(Edmonton’s) snow clearing on active pathways and local roads is not good enough.”
“This is not due to the work of city staff. They are doing what they can with the resources available. This is due to a lack of equipment and staff,” his tweet said.
Knack pointed out that during his time on council there have been a few changes, such as the use of calcium chloride. While it made road safety better, it had a greater negative impact on public and private infrastructure.
In the fall of 2018, councillors ultimately voted against the continued use of it.
However, there hasn’t been enough done since then according to Knack — even as the city continues to grow.
“I think we talk about it every year because truly I don’t think we’ve been willing to resource it appropriately,” he told Global News.
During a summer council meeting, Knack said city council approved the new snow and ice control policy, but he’s hoping a motion he put forward will have a real impact on the way the city looks at snow removal for years to come.
The motion asks that the city administration provide options to increase the service standard in the city snow and ice control procedure after considering the equipment, staffing and budget.
Knack said ultimately, the report should highlight where the city can provide a higher standard of service than it currently does.
“So for example, local roads will not be touched all winter long — unless there’s enough snow. … Is that reasonable anymore? I think the answer is no,” Knack said.
“Because even if my car can get through, which it can, if you run into a lot of freeze-thaw cycles like we are seeing more and more of, that creates very rutted roads and is very challenging for people.”
The eight-term councillor added it’s time to increase the snow removal budget through a phased-in approach, though he pointed out, “we are still in tough economic times.”
— with files from Nicole Stillger, Global News