Lincoln to test program for residential plowing

City officials on Tuesday announced plans to test a plowing program aimed at reducing ice and snow buildup in residential streets this winter.
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) – City officials on Tuesday announced plans to test a plowing program aimed at reducing ice and snow buildup in residential streets this winter.

Lincoln Transportation and Utilities Director Liz Elliot said, for some storms, the city would hire private contractors to plow residential areas while city crews prioritized arterial streets.

Elliot said the priority streets normally take six to 12 hours to clear, leaving residential areas untouched. She said the department will use data to decide the best approach for each storm.

“It will take some time to create general guidelines for the timing of residential plowing, but our goal is to improve public safety and allocate limited funds wisely,” she said.

Elliott said LTU has used a four-inch snow depth guideline to activate residential plowing in the past, but street conditions can vary widely across the community.

With the new plan, she says residential plowing may only be needed in areas that see heavier snowfall and ice buildup.

The new test program will not be fully operational for several years as city officials finalize criteria and because contractors will need time to develop additional resources.

The city also purchased seven pavement sensors to monitor the temperature of the streets to increase the accuracy of forecasting street conditions. Once they are installed, LTU will have 13 pavement sensors on Lincoln streets.

Additionally, LTU has replaced an old storage builder with a more efficient facility that holds 2,000 more tons of salt than the previous one.

Officials say if residential parking bans are required, parking will be banned on only one side of the street instead of switching sides. During residential bans, parking on even sides of the street will be banned in even-numbered years like 2020.  Parking on odd sides of the street will be banned in odd-numbered years like 2021.

 

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