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St. Paul residents can use door hangers to remind neighbors to shovel their walks

St. Paul requires residents to shovel their public sidewalks within 24 hours of a major snowstorm —- like today’s — but what if they don’t.

You can remind offenders with door hangers that are available at City Council offices downtown and at many district council offices. They’re being provided by St. Paul Smart Trips, a nonprofit organization that improves access and mobility for those who travel in and around St. Paul.

And if those neighbors don’t take kindly to these not-so-subtle hints? Helping them out and shoveling yourself is one option. Or turn them in, I guess.

“Last year we fielded 4,600 complaints for unshoveled sidewalks, which clearly results in increased costs for the city. We need everyone’s help to make sure there are safe, clear sidewalks for all of our residents,” said Ward 4 City Councilmember Russ Stark.

The rules:

Saint Paul requires property owners bordering public sidewalks to shovel sidewalks within 24 hours of a snowfall. The full width of the sidewalk needs to be cleared, and if the property is a corner lot, the sidewalk corners and curb ramps also need to be cleared. If the sidewalk isn’t cleared and a complaint is called in, residents will be notified by the city and charged to have the city shovel. Shoveling around fire hydrants is also a neighborly thing to do in order to save first responders time in an emergency, though it’s not required by city code.

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Comments (2)

  1. Submitted by Amanda Tempel on 12/09/2009 - 01:28 pm.

    Are there any other cities in MN, USA, or Canada that allow for this community education action?

    I’d love to see some St. Paul data on this from surveying the perceptions of neighbors to number of snow removal complaint calls & resulting costs to the city.

    I wish that Minneapolis would provide block leaders the materials to do an educational program like this instead of asking us to just calling 311 when we see a problem.

  2. Submitted by Brady Clark on 12/11/2009 - 12:23 am.

    I don’t know of any other cities that are doing this. From what I’ve heard Minneapolis is working on flyers for folks to distribute yet this winter.

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