Chicago Approves Sidewalk Clearing Pilot

The new program will develop plans for keeping sidewalks clear of snow and ice to improve accessibility.

1 minute read

July 21, 2023, 7:00 AM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction


Snow covers a sidewalk and small homes on a Chicago street

D Guest Smith / Adobe Stock

After years of advocacy and demands from accessibility advocates, the city of Chicago passed a ‘Plow the Sidewalks’ ordinance that will launch a pilot program to clear sidewalks of snow and ice this winter. As John Greenfield explains in Streetsblog Chicago, “The ordinance requires that the Chicago Department of Streets & Sanitation create rules that would choose the six zones (drawn according to criteria in the ordinance) and specify standards for streets and san workers clearing snow and ice from sidewalks and sidewalk ramps.”

“Every winter people with disabilities lose their ability to fully access the community, to participate in society due to uncleared snow and ice throughout the city,” said Access Living transportation policy analyst Laura Saltzman, adding, “Plow the Sidewalks would help to restore that access, allowing disabled residents and tourists alike to use portions of Chicago that become lost whenever obstructed sidewalks are ignored or improperly cleared during the winter season.”

Wednesday, July 19, 2023 in Streetsblog Chicago

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