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Progress made clearing residential streets

November 13, 2020 - 11:55am

Published On:

November 13, 2020 - 12:00pm

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Crews continue working around the clock to get everyone moving again, following a severe blizzard that brought high amounts of snowfall and strong winds, creating drifting on roads and sidewalks.

“Great gains are being made on restoring mobility in residential streets and we continue to bring on additional contractors for this work”, says Terry Schmidt, General Manager of Transportation and Construction. “Crews continue to work simultaneously throughout the entire City. We are focused on beginning with the streets worst affected and clearing residential streets in all neighborhoods. This will be done in a sequence where the streets carrying the most traffic, or strategically located streets are addressed first.”

As of Friday morning, the City reports residential street snow clearing is now complete in Kensington, Stonebridge, Eastview, Holiday Park and Brighton. Snow clearing is underway in an additional six neighbourhoods, including Dundonald, Rosewood, Hampton Village, Lakeridge, Arbor Creek and Evergreen. Today, work is scheduled to start in Wildwood, Buena Vista, Mayfair, Silverwood Heights, Erindale and Montgomery.

“With nearly 300 crew members clearing snow, and counting, this schedule may change, so we encourage you to keep checking online for updates,” says Schmidt. “As much as we can, we’re coordinating the clearing schedule with waste and recycling collections; however, there will be some instances they overlap. In those cases, crews will move bins onto driveways, then move them back onto the street.”

Schmidt also encourages children to stay away from playing in the snow piles. The huge accumulations of snow present a dangerous situation if climbing on the snow piles or building tunnels through them.

“Once again, thank you for helping your neighbours, remaining patient during the city-wide snow clean-up, and for staying safe around the snow removal equipment on our streets,” Schmidt adds. “Please remember that road conditions are still considered hazardous due to snow accumulation and the layer of ice underneath the snow. Our crews are sanding and salting to treat ice as snow is being cleared from roads.”

There may be piles of snow left by the graders (windrows); crews will come back afterwards to remove those that are impacting residents.

Please do not push snow out onto the street when clearing snow from sidewalks and driveways, as this can clog up streets with even more snow and continue to create accessibility issues.

More information on our process for snow clearing can be found at saskatoon.ca/snow

Severe winter storm update November 12

November 12, 2020 - 12:40pm

Published On:

November 12, 2020 - 12:45pm

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We’re coming to residential streets and the City will be today releasing a schedule of what residential streets will be plowed.  

Back lanes will also be prioritized along with the residential snow clearing 

It’s our objective to restore mobility to key streets in every neighbourhood, city wide - get everyone moving around again. 
 
This amount of snowfall has presented an incredible challenge - we are doing everything we can to get Saskatoon back to a daily routine. 
 
The plan is to put as many resources as possible in as many neighbourhoods as possible all at the same time across the City.  This work will be done night and day, in all neighbourhoods. 

The focus will be on beginning with the streets worst affected and clearing residential streets in all neighborhoods in a sequence where the streets carrying the most traffic, or are strategically located, are addressed first. 

We want you to know we’ve heard your calls and we’re throwing everything we’ve got at this to help you and your family get where you need to go, safely. 
 
Every minute of every day there has been equipment working on Saskatoon’s streets.   

  • All priority streets were made passable -- about 1800 km of lanes -- by punching through with a grader or a plow and not doing a full clean-up of the street. 
  • Crews returned to priority streets to do a proper grading to ensure all lanes are available for traffic. This has been completed on about 90% of the P1s, 20% of P2s and 10% of P3s.  
  • 100% of residential streets in Kensington have been cleared and 50% of residential streets in Stonebridge 
  • 50% of our total of 150 km of priority sidewalks have been cleared 
  • Transit is moving again on a modified schedule by opening the downtown bus terminal and clearing key routes for buses to travel on 

When the plows arrive, residents are not required to move their vehicle, but if able, crews will appreciate more space to complete the work and the ability to clear streets more fullySo, if you can move your vehicle -- please do -- if not, we’ll plow around it.  
 
There may be piles of snow left by the graders (windrows); we’ll come back afterwards to clear these out. 

We have also revamped our saskatoon.ca/snow webpages to make it easier to: 

  • Find information about the Residential Snow Clearing Schedule 
  • Access links to our news releases which provide valuable information on our progress and other service updates 
  • View news conferences on our YouTube Channel  
  • And find general information on our Priority Road system.   

And as another reminder, please do not push snow out onto the street when clearing snow from sidewalks and driveways, as this can clog up streets with even more snow and continue to create accessibility issues. 

We will be continuously working on updating and adding information on this webpage as it becomes available.  Again, the residents can visit saskatoon.ca/snow. 

Update on City’s Response to Severe Winter Storm

November 10, 2020 - 4:22pm

Published On:

November 10, 2020 - 4:15pm

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City snow crews continue to clean up the streets after a severe winter storm that brought high amounts of snowfall and strong winds, creating drifting on roads and sidewalks. Freezing rain has also created a layer of ice underneath the snow. As of today (Nov. 10), crews have been able to open at least one traffic lane on all major and secondary roads. 

While efforts continue to be focused on the highest traffic streets – first making them all passable, then returning to plow curb-to-curb, sand, salt and de-ice – the City recognizes that residential roads continue to be a challenge.

“The City’s snow clearing service does not extend to residential neighbourhoods, but we recognize that this is an unusually large amount of snowfall, all at once, for our city,” says Terry Schmidt, General Manager of Transportation & Construction. “For this reason, we’ve decided to proceed with a plan to restore mobility on all roads, including residential streets.”

“We recognize the challenges people are facing, and we want to help fix the problem,” continues Schmidt. “We’re going to throw everything we have at this effort to clear away the snow and get people moving around again.”

The residential snow clearing will begin after the higher traffic streets are complete. Crews will work through residential streets, beginning with the most impacted. If Saskatoon experiences more snowfall, as is forecast for tomorrow (Nov. 11), crews will need to prioritize higher traffic streets as usual. 

The City wants to thank residents for staying safe around snow equipment, helping out neighbours, and remaining patient during the city clean-up. Drivers are reminded that road conditions are still considered dangerous due to snow accumulation, drifting, and hidden ice. 

As the City continues to respond to the effects of this severe winter storm, civic facilities and services have been affected as follows: 

School Zone Snow Removal 

Crews are planning to remove piles of snow left by graders (windrows) from all school zones next week. This will provide space for vehicles parking or dropping off and picking up children.  

City Hall 

Where possible, residents are asked to use available online services at saskatoon.ca. For property taxes, assessment, and utility related matters, they can contact the City by e-mail at revenue@saskatoon.ca or phone at 306-975-2400. 

Residents that need to attend City Hall should be advised that the roads are plowed but there is minimal street parking due to the windrows. Windrows will be cleared away at a later date. 

Election 

Due to the snow, an additional day to vote in the municipal election has been added this Friday (Nov. 13). Residents who plan to vote are urged to make a plan for travel. Consider Saskatoon Transit which is resuming normal operations as the snow is cleared. 

Garbage and Recycling Collection 

Collection calendars have been updated to reflect the following changes: 

  • Monday, November 9 collections rescheduled to Saturday, November 14. 
  • Tuesday, November 10 collections rescheduled to Sunday, November 15. 
  • Please check saskatoon.ca/collectioncalendar or download the Saskatoon Recycle & Waste app to confirm and sign-up for reminders so you don’t miss pick-up day. 

Attempts will be made to resume collections on Wednesday, November 11 and for the remainder of the week for garbage and recycling. 

  • City and Loraas collection crews will do their best to access carts, although accessibility will be a determining factor on some streets and back lanes. 
  • Please roll out carts by 7:00 a.m. and ensure that carts are placed in front of or 4 feet to the side of all snowbanks, not on top of or behind. This is to ensure that collection truck arms can access carts for effective collection. 

Saskatoon Transit 

Transit has resumed modified service on most routes. Fixed route service will continue to expand as streets are cleared. Access Transit continues to provide essential trips only. 

Transit users should consult the real-time app Transit or Google Maps Transit on desktop or SaskatoonTransit.ca for real time route information and service alerts. 

Leisure Services 

City indoor arenas reopened for scheduled rentals at 4:00 p.m. today (Nov. 10). Parking is limited at Cosmo Arena. 

Leisure Centres remain closed on Tuesday, November 10, and will reopen to the public on Wednesday, November 11, at 12:00 p.m. (excluding Cosmo Civic Centre and Terry Fox Track which are closed on statutory holidays). 

The Saskatoon Forestry Farm Park & Zoo remains closed on Tuesday, November 10.

Civic Services & Holiday Hours for Remembrance Day, Wednesday, November 11

November 10, 2020 - 8:03am

Published On:

November 10, 2020 - 8:00am

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Due to COVID-19 physical distancing requirements and the current phase of the Re-Open Saskatchewan Plan, the City of Saskatoon already has a number of adjusted services in place. 

On Remembrance Day, Wednesday, November 11, 2020, there are several statutory holiday service adjustments. See full details on the City’s website.

Please visit saskatoon.ca/covid-19 for timely updates from the City of Saskatoon on everything you need to know to stay safe.

Free transit on Remembrance Day for past & present military

November 10, 2020 - 7:48am

Published On:

November 10, 2020 - 7:45am

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Saskatoon Transit is recognizing veterans and current members of the Canadian Armed Forces with free transit service on Remembrance Day.

The free bus service will be offered to armed forces veterans and current serving personnel, including cadets and reservists. Free bus service will also be provided to their one companion.

Eligible transit users can identify themselves by wearing a military uniform or presenting military ID or a CF1 card when they board.

Providing free transit to veterans and current members of the Canadian Armed Forces is a way to recognize the tremendous commitment they have made, and continue to make, to the community and country.

Saskatoon Transit buses will also display a “Lest We Forget” message on November 11.

Winter Storm Response: civic facilities and service level impacts

November 10, 2020 - 6:31am

Published On:

November 10, 2020 - 6:30am

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Progress continues on snow clearing with crews reporting all priority 1 roadways passable, meaning there’s a minimum of one lane open and a minimum level of mobility. Right now, approximately 70 percent of priority 2 roads are also passable, on target to get to all priority 2 streets by noon tomorrow. 

Road conditions, though passable, are still dangerous due to snow accumulation, high winds and ice on the surface. If travel is necessary, only large vehicles with 4 x 4 should be used.

Once all priority 2 streets are passable, we’ll move through the remainder of our priority road system. Crews will then return to the highest priority roads to clear snow curb to curb, sand, salt and de-ice as necessary.

While the City does not typically grade snow from residential streets, if any residential street gets drifted in such that they are impassable, that street will get plowed or graded, provided other priority roadways or major thoroughfares are passable. Residents are asked to phone the Customer Care Centre at 306-975-2476.

As the City continues to respond to the effects of the winter storm, civic facilities and services have been affected as follows:

City Hall

Residents are encouraged to avoid travelling to City Hall. Instead, please use online services (property taxes, assessment and utility related matters) at saskatoon.ca or contact us through e-mail at revenue@saskatoon.ca or phone at 306-975-2400.
 

Saskatoon Transit

Transit service has resumed on 22nd, 8th, Idylwyld and Attridge Drive until 10:00 p.m. Access Transit will remain suspended until tomorrow morning. Fixed route service will be expanded tomorrow as streets continue to be cleared and workers are able to safely make it to work. Please check the real-time app, transit or Google Maps Transit on desktop or SaskatoonTransit.ca for service alerts.

Service is free until the end of the day by showing the special Election pass.

Remember the SafeBus program is available. If you’re in need, hold up your hand (palm out) in the direction of an approaching bus, or go to a parked bus, and the operator will stop, contact emergency services, and give you a safe place to wait.

 

Garbage and Recycling

Garbage (Black Cart) and Recycling (Blue Cart):

  • Monday, November 9 collections rescheduled to Saturday, November 14
  • Tuesday, November 10 collections rescheduled to Sunday, November 15

Please roll out carts by 7:00 a.m. and remember to avoid placing on snowdrifts to ensure effective collection.

The City and Loraas Recycle will continue to monitor the situation and inform residents if other routes are impacted throughout the week.

Leisure Services

Leisure Centres will remain closed Tuesday, November 10. Staff will be contacting patrons booked for a drop-in visit or registered program.

 

City Indoor Arenas will remain closed through the morning of Tuesday, November 10.

 

For timely updates on snow and ice alerts and leisure facility closures, visit saskatoon.ca/service-alerts and follow us at twitter.com/YXEServiceAlert

Winter Storm Response: snow clearing, civic facilities, service level impacts

November 9, 2020 - 2:13pm

Published On:

November 9, 2020 - 2:15pm

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The City is committed to working around the clock to get Saskatoon moving again following a severe winter storm over the weekend and into Monday morning.  The storm resulted in impassable roads, large drifts and ice, but progress is being made.

Snow Clearing

Snow clearing crews are focused on clearing all priority 1 roads, including Circle Drive, College Drive, Idylwyld Drive, 8th Street, 22nd Street, bridges, overpasses and ramps. All priority 1 roads are now passable, meaning there’s a minimum of one lane open. Right now, approximately 40 percent of all priority 2 roads are also passable.

“We would like to thank residents who have been able to stay off the roads which has allowed room for snow clearing equipment and emergency vehicles,” says Jeff Jorgenson, City Manager. “We remain focused on our priority roads and are working to open as many of our priority 2 roads as possible before the end of the day.”

The City continues to ask residents to avoid unnecessary travel. If travel is necessary, adjust for driving conditions and watch for snow removal crews equipped with blue and amber flashing lights. Stay a safe distance behind and be prepared to stop quickly. Some traffic signs and signals are covered with snow, so drivers should practice extra caution at intersections.

More information on the City’s snow clearing efforts can be found at saskatoon.ca/snow.

Civic Facilities and Service Impacts

City Hall

Residents are encouraged to avoid travelling to City Hall. Instead, please use online services (property taxes, assessment and utility related matters) at saskatoon.ca or contact us through e-mail at revenue@saskatoon.ca or phone at 306-975-2400.

Saskatoon Transit

Transit service is suspended but will resume as conditions allow. Please note the customer service phone line is experiencing a high volume of calls. For updates check the real-time mobile app, Transit, or visit saskatoontransit.ca/servicealerts. Once service resumes, it will be FREE for those who show the special Election Day pass.

Access Transit

Access Transit service is suspended and will resume once roads become more accessible. Affected customers are being contacted. Please call 306-975-3555 with any questions or concerns.

Garbage and Recycling

Garbage and Recycling collection for Monday, November 9 has been suspended. Collection has been rescheduled for Saturday, November 14. The City will continue to monitor the situation and inform residents if other routes are impacted.

The Landfill will close at 5:00 p.m. Anyone planning to visit the Landfill should bring assistance to unload.

Parks and Urban Forestry

Requests for service will be prioritized with service response occurring primarily during daylight hours. Service priorities would include locations where branches are blocking roadways and sidewalks or have the potential for injury or damage. Please report downed branch locations to 306-975-2476.

Trees on private property are the responsibility of the property owner. Brush that is cleared as a result of private trees obstructing public sidewalks or roadways will be left on private property for the owner to clean up.  

All elm branches must be disposed of at the Landfill.

Leisure Services

Saskatoon Forestry Farm Park & Zoo: closed

City Arenas: closed until at least 4:00 p.m. (City will reevaluate later today)

Leisure Centres: closed

Saskatoon Light & Power

There have been no service interruptions, but Saskatoon Light & Power (SL&P) is on standby to address any issues that may arise.

For timely updates regarding all service disruptions visit saskatoon.ca/servicealerts or follow us on Twitter @YXEServiceAlert.

Civic Election, Monday November 9th 

It is the Civic Election and the polls are open until 8:00 p.m.

Leisure Centres are not accepting mail-in ballot drop-offs because they are closed. However, voters can dropp off their completed mail-in ballots at any polling location in the city. All poll locations can be found here.  

Visit saskatoon.ca/vote2020 for all election related updates and information.

Emergency Preparedness 

The City has now moved into recovery mode, which is just as important as response.  

Continue to ensure your own safety over the coming days:  

Reach out to people who may require support:  

  • More than 300 people in Saskatoon are self-isolating due to COVID-19.  
  • Consider whether any of your neighbours may need assistance, including those that are seniors or have disabilities.  

​If travel is necessary:  

  • Equip yourself with an emergency kit containing warm clothes, blankets, candles, snacks and a shovel. 
  • Try not to travel alone.  Have someone else who can assist you in the vehicle 
  • Be sure to let someone know where you’re going and when you arrive.  
  • Plan for delays.  
  • Activate the GPS locator app on your smartphone (‘Find My’ on iPhone and ‘Find My Device’ on Android) to allow assigned contacts to track you.  
  • A more detailed list of emergency preparedness tips can be found at saskatoon.ca/snowstorm2020  

Residents are encouraged to subscribe to NotifyNow for updates on public safety messages.   

For timely updates on snow and ice alerts visit saskatoon.ca/service-alerts and follow us at twitter.com/YXEServiceAlert. 

Winter Storm Response: snow clearing efforts, civic facilities, and service level impacts 

November 9, 2020 - 8:58am

Published On:

November 9, 2020 - 9:00am

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Saskatoon experienced a severe blizzard with high amounts of snowfall and strong winds which have created drifting on roads and sidewalks. Freezing rain has also created a layer of ice underneath the snow. This is an incredibly challenging situation and the City is working 24/7 to respond and get Saskatoon moving again.  

Snow Clearing 

The majority of streets throughout the city are completely blocked with snow. Circle Drive is passable, but some ramps are not. College Drive, 8th Street, 22nd Street and Idywyld Drive have barely one lane open. All other Priority 1 streets are blocked with snow.  

Priority streets include Circle Drive, College Drive, Idylwyld Drive, 8th Street, 22nd Street, bridges, overpasses and ramps.

“Last night was a challenge as we were having to balance plowing and grading with helping emergency services rescue stranded motorists,” says Goran Saric, Director of Roadways, Fleet and Support. “We’re staying focused on our priority road system. Once the highest priority streets are cleared, we’ll move through the rest of the system, at times returning to the highest priority roads multiple times to improve mobility.” 

The City is asking residents to avoid unnecessary travel so clearing can continue and emergency vehicles can get through. If travel is necessary, adjust for driving conditions and watch for snow removal crews equipped with blue and amber flashing lights. Stay a safe distance behind and be prepared to stop quickly. Some traffic signs and signals are covered with snow, so drivers should practice extra caution at intersections.  

More information on the City’s snow clearing efforts can be found at saskatoon.ca/snow 

Civic Facilities and Service Impacts 
 
Saskatoon Transit

Transit service is suspended and will resume service once Priority 1 streets become accessible. Service will be expanded as conditions allow. For updates check the real-time mobile app, transit or visit saskatoontransit.ca/service-alerts. All non-essential Access Transit trips have been canceled. Affected customers will be contacted. Call 306-975-3555 with any questions or concerns. 

Garbage and Recycling

Garbage and Recycling collection for Monday has been suspended. Collection has been rescheduled for Saturday, November 14. The Landfill opening has been delayed. 

Leisure Services

Leisure Centres will remain closed today to all programming, rentals and Book-a-Visit drop-in activities. Shaw Centre (Bethlehem Gymnasium) and the Cliff Wright Branch Library in Lakewood Civic Centre will remain open as election polling stations from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Shaw, Cosmo, Lakewood and Lawson Civic Centres will also be open from 12:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. for election ballot drop-off locations. In addition, all City Arenas will remain closed until at least 4:00 p.m. 

For timely updates regarding all service disruptions visit saskatoon.ca/servicealerts or follow us on Twitter @YXEServiceAlert 

Civic Election - Monday, November 9

Polling locations for the 2020 Civic Election are scheduled to be open 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Election workers are experiencing difficulties getting to their polling places and some locations are not yet open. The Election Office asks voters for patience as City road crews work to respond to this weekend’s severe winter storm. As crews need time and space this morning, voters are encouraged to plan to visit polling locations this afternoon. For updates, visit saskatoon.ca/vote2020.

Emergency Preparedness  

The City has now moved into recovery mode.  

Continue to ensure your own safety over the coming days:  

  • Reach out to people who may require support:  
  • More than 300 people in Saskatoon are self-isolating due to COVID-19.  
  • Consider whether any of your neighbours may need assistance, including those that are seniors or have disabilities.  
  • If travel is necessary:  
  • Equip yourself with an emergency kit containing warm clothes, blankets, candles, snacks and shovel. 
  • Try not to travel alone.  Have someone else who can assist you in the vehicle 
  • Be sure to let someone know where you’re going and when you arrive.  
  • Plan for delays.  
  • Activate the GPS locator app on your smartphone (‘Find My’ on iPhone and ‘Find My Device’ on Android) to allow assigned contacts to track you.  

Residents are encouraged to subscribe to NotifyNow for updates on public safety messages.   

For timely updates on snow and ice alerts visit saskatoon.ca/service-alerts and follow us at twitter.com/YXEServiceAlert.

2020 Civic Election: Winter Storm Update for Voters

November 9, 2020 - 8:33am

Published On:

November 9, 2020 - 8:30am

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Although today is Election Day, we’re facing the aftermath of a major snow storm that blanketed the entire city.

Polling locations for the 2020 Civic Election are scheduled to be open 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Election workers are experiencing difficulties getting to their polling places and some locations are not yet open. The Election Office asks voters for patience as City road crews work to respond to this weekend’s severe winter storm. Crews need time and space this morning and voters are encouraged to plan to visit polling locations this afternoon.

The City’s snow removal strategy strives to maximize, as is safe and practical, people being able to move around the City today, accessing polling stations. While crews are working, voters are asked to consider walking to polling locations, if possible, or use Transit, as services become available. Please check the real-time app, transit or Google Maps Transit on desktop or SaskatoonTransit.ca for service alerts.

Polling Station Updates

As election workers navigate windblown and ice-covered roads, there will be delays in opening polling locations this morning. The Local Government Election Act, 2015 that governs municipal elections in Saskatchewan states that polling locations must close at 8:00 pm. Anyone in line at 8:00 p.m. will be able to vote. For updates, visit saskatoon.ca/vote2020.

Mail-in Ballot Drop-Off

In light of the winter storm and for the safety of citizens, voters will be able to drop off their completed mail-in ballot at any polling location across the city today. This is in addition to the previously announced locations, found at saskatoon.ca/mailballot.

Other important Election Day reminders:

Visit saskatoon.ca/vote2020 for all election-related information.

City ready to respond to stranded persons during winter storm

November 8, 2020 - 6:01pm

Published On:

November 8, 2020 - 6:00pm

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As the winter storm continues to hit Saskatoon and impact road conditions, residents are asked to stay in their homes. If getting around the city is necessary, please consider Saskatoon Transit.

The Saskatoon Fire Department asks that if residents are driving and find themselves stranded, remember:

  • don't panic
  • stay in place with your vehicle
  • call 306-975-8300 and if it is an emergency call 911

Responders will be contacted and once they arrive arrangements will be made to get stranded individuals to a safe location. Responders will be contacted from Fire, Police or Saskatoon Search and Rescue; and will be in uniforms and clearly identifiable.

Subscribe to NotifyNow for updates on public safety messages.

For timely updates on snow and ice alerts visit saskatoon.ca/service-alerts and follow us at twitter.com/YXEServiceAlert.

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