'Be reasonable,' mayor says about snow removal complaints
Codi Wilson, CP24.com
Published Monday, February 18, 2019 10:12AM EST
Last Updated Monday, February 18, 2019 11:50AM EST
The city continues to face a barrage of complaints about snow-covered bike lanes, sidewalks, and roads following two recent winter storms but Mayor John Tory says changes to snow removal procedures likely won’t come until next winter.
Following a particularly snowy 2019, many Torontonians have taken to social media to express anger over snow banks where bike lanes should be and unplowed sidewalks in neighbourhoods across Toronto.
In a tweet sent out over the weekend, Coun. Josh Matlow said he does not “accept” the current standards for snow clearing in the city.
“I believe Toronto can do a better job at clearing snow. I’m requesting higher standards for road snow clearing- including sidewalks in every neighborhood to make our city more safe & accessible for all,” Matlow wrote.
The mayor has asked for a review of the city’s winter operations management but any recommendations that come from the review will likely not be in place until the next winter season, he told CP24 Monday.
“The review would be unlikely to be done in time to change the standards and practices for this winter,” Tory said.
Tory asked members of the public to “be reasonable” with their expectations for snow clearing this year.
“We’ve had… two of the biggest storms we’ve had in long time. One of them was the biggest storm we’ve had in 10 years,” he said.
“We have to make priorities as to what gets cleared first. Bike lanes are a priority but sometimes they will fall behind some of the sidewalks and some of the other things that have to get done. There is only a certain number of people to go around.”
Tory said the review he has ordered is expected to come back to council in the spring.
“We are going to make sure all of this makes sense, is affordable, because we can’t just say we are going to spend any amount of money to do this in record time,” the mayor said.
“We are going to do this as quickly as we can, as fairly as we can, as efficiently and effectively as we can and that what’s we’ve asked to have reviewed.”