Tuesday, February 27, 2007 - 4:21am
Contact: George Twigg, (608) 266-4611 (Mayor's Office)
Al Schumacher, (608) 266-4680 (Streets Superintendent)
Kathy Cryan, (608) 266-4430 (City Engineering)
Tom Adamowicz, (608) 266-4551 (Building Inspection/Sidewalks)
Madison - The snow emergency for the City of Madison was lifted as of 7:00 a.m today, as cleanup from this weekend's storm progresses. The 15.3 inches of snow accumulation made this the largest storm in Madison since December, 1990.
According to the UW Space Science and Engineering Center, this is the first time since records have been kept (starting in 1869) that Madison saw three consecutive days of snow accumulations in excess of four inches. Conditions were exacerbated by the extremely high moisture content in the snow, which made it very difficult to plow and shovel. Plowing the entire City, usually an 8-10 hour process, took 17 hours on Sunday.
Top City staff met early this morning to review storm cleanup progress, and make plans for the upcoming storm that is expected to impact our weather from Wednesday afternoon through Friday. Current forecasts indicate this system is likely to consist more of rain than snow, increasing the risk for possible flooding due to both rainfall and snow melt.
City Engineering and the Streets Division are working together to clear intersection and storm inlets in the streets. Residents who see flooding should call Engineering immediately at (608) 266-4430.
Streets Division crews are currently focused on clearing snow from areas where problems have been reported. Residents and businesses with questions or concerns about their street conditions can contact the Streets Department at 246-4532 (East), or 266-4681 (West), or via the web at http://www.cityofmadison.com/reportAProblem/.
Tonight, the Streets Division will be concentrating on clearing intersections for better sight lines and clearing turning lanes. They will also be working to clear streets to the curb line, to restore safe streets widths, and on-street parking. Cross walks and bus shelters are also on the priority list for continued cleanup.
As previously noted, enforcement by Building Inspection of sidewalk clearing requirements will begin at noon today. Enforcement will focus on sidewalks that have been untouched since the weekend storm. Residents are also asked to clear snow in a five foot radius around their neighborhood fire hydrants.
In addition to approximately 90 City trucks, 70 private trucks were contracted with to assist with the cleanup. The City of Madison includes some 750 miles of streets, and 1700 total lane miles.
"I want to thank residents and businesses for their patience as we continue to clean up from this very challenging storm," said Mayor Dave Cieslewicz. "I am also grateful to the many City workers and contractors who have put in very long hours on the job for several days now."
- George Twigg266-4611