It looks like winter has officially arrived. And while residents are asked to clear their sidewalks for everyone’s safety, you can keep up with the City of Toronto’s snow removal efforts in real time.
The city created Plow TO in 2016, which includes snow removal updates and a real time map of Toronto. The page enables users to enter a specific address in Toronto, and follow the winter road maintenance of the area.
And since then, it has made several updates, including for the 2019/20 winter season which includes:
- ESRI based mapping and design enhancements
- Real-time location of sidewalk equipment
- New map layers (wards, traffic cameras and cycling network)
- Enhanced search functionality by ward, address and intersection
#CityofTO In snowy and icy conditions, please drive safely and watch out for pedestrians and cyclist. Plan your travel, leave extra time, be patient & consider using public transit.
— TO Transportation (@TO_Transport) December 1, 2019
According to the city, as soon as snow begins to fall, salt trucks are sent to expressways and main roads. If the city receives 2.5 centimetres of snow, the plows are sent to the expressways and, if five centimetres falls, plows also go to the main roads, with plowing taking place intermittently for the duration of the storm.
It is only when the snow stops, and if the snow accumulation has reached eight centimetres, that plows are sent to local roads. The city will clear the local roads between 14 and 16 hours after the snow stops falling.
The city says it has a fleet of more than 1,100 snow clearing vehicles as well as more than 1,500 personnel (contracted and city staff) on standby 24 hours a day and seven days a week ready “to respond to snow at a moment’s notice.”
A reminder as well to those in the downtown core, property owners are required to clear their sidewalks of snow within the 12 hours following a storm.