City’s preparations for winter are “snow” joke

Reading time: 3 minutes

You may not be thinking about snow yet, but the City of Guelph is already knee-deep in winter maintenance plans to keep all roads, bike lanes and sidewalks safe.

Each year, the City prepares for two kinds of winter maintenance: normal operations with sanding and salting, and major weather events that require a plow out. A plow out is announced after a total of 10 centimetres of snow has fallen. During a plow out, residents are asked to remove their cars from City streets and the parking exemption  for overnight on-street parking is suspended for 48 hours. The City budgets for six plows out every season.

It can take up to 48 hours after a storm for us to clear all roads, and up to three days to clear 660 kilometres of sidewalks. That’s why it’s important in those first couple of days for residents to be a little patient — our crews are trying their best.

The City’s sidewalks alone, if stretched end-to-end, would reach from Guelph to Montreal.

Self serve winter maintenance tools

There are a two ways residents can check in on what the City is doing to maintain City streets, bike lanes and sidewalks.

  1. Sign up for plow out email alerts at for information residents need to know during the first 24 hours
  2. Check Plow Tracker at to see the City’s trucks in real time

Help the City clear snow from sidewalks, storm drains and fire hydrants

Residents can lend a hand during major snow events by:

  • Clearing storm drains to prevent streets from flooding
  • Clearing a path around fire hydrants for easy access for emergency services
  • Shovelling sidewalks and windrows for elderly and disabled residents by signing up for Snow Angels
  • Driving slow and never passing a snow plow

For more information

Doug Godfrey, General Manager
519-822-1260 extension 2520
[email protected]