Do you like Seattle's snow plan?
SEATTLE - Images of 2008's snow storm are still fresh in many people's minds – dangerous ice covered streets, snow and ice removal problems, and stranded cars and buses. Now, the city of Seattle has a new plan to prioritize what streets get cleared first.
The city will only plow main arterials in coordination with Metro bus routes. The focus has shifted to clearing streets where buses travel.
"We're not a big East Coast city that gets alot of snow. If we get a big dump, we don't have the resources to clear every street. We will prioritize streets and bus routes and get ahead of the storm," said Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn during a Tuesday news conference.
During ice storms, the city wants people to take public transportation. Most residential streets will not be salted and plowed.
"It's very time consuming. It's not the best use of our resources, our limited resources. This is Seattle and we don't have the luxury of an excess supply of equipment," said Steve Pratt, SDOT Operations Director.
One major street that's not on the priority list is Queen Anne Ave N. The Seattle Department of Transportation says trying to clear Queen Anne Avenue North during the snow storm was not a good use of its limited resources.
The city has more than 2,000 tons of salt in four locations and 46,000 gallons of salt brine solution ready for use in a major storm. The supply should last for a solid 5 days of response. And there's an agreement with vendors to get more if the city runs out of supplies. SDOT also has 30 plows and four anti-icing trucks ready to go.
Looking back at the snow mess of 2008, the mayor guarantees we are better prepared this time around.
"We do have a new feature in the plan that wasn't here before. We will be doing manual cleaning of pedestrian facilities, stairwells, landings and pedestrian paths, in order for people to get to the Metro system," said Pratt.
The city says the new plan should help people walk around the snow.