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At snow safety summit, Syracuse residents favor city sidewalk plows to clear snow

Tom Magnarelli
WRVO Public Media
Snow Safety Summit in Syracuse.

Sidewalk snow removal was a top concern among Syracuse residents who attended the city’s recent Snow Safety Summit. The city asked residents to weigh in on solutions to snow removal problems. 

Michael Elderbroom of Syracuse said he has complained to the city three times and nothing has happened about a sidewalk around a park by his home that gets covered in snow.

“It’s a one-way street, so when the plow plows, they plow everything up on the sidewalk," Elderbroom said. "We like to walk our dogs around the park and we can’t without walking in the road because the sidewalk is not plowed, very dangerous.”

As a homeowner, he said he would be willing to pay a little extra to have the city clear snow from the sidewalks. Many at the snow summit, including Forrest Teske favored having city workers do the job.

“The idea of a municipal snow removal also provides jobs in the city without going straight to profits," Teske said. "It keeps the money of Syracuse in Syracuse.”

Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh said there may be more than one answer. He said it could be a city-run program or it could be a public-private partnership.

“The key is follow-through," Walsh said. "Ultimately we will work with the community, with our partners in the common council, identify what we believe will be the right solution or the right solutions and then we have to execute.”

The city’s innovation team will process the public’s input into a few recommendations for the mayor.

Tom Magnarelli is a reporter covering the central New York and Syracuse area. He joined WRVO as a freelance reporter in 2012 while a student at Syracuse University and was hired full time in 2015. He has reported extensively on politics, education, arts and culture and other issues around central New York.