Continued emphasis on snow clearance for pedestrians!

Continued emphasis on snow clearance for pedestrians!

MassDOT’s recently published Snow and Ice Control Program details many of the steps that MassDOT will take to deal with the impacts of its application of chemicals on roadway, a required filing to the Massachusetts Executive Office of Environmental and Energy Affairs (EEA). 

In 2021, WalkBoston urged regulators to require MassDOT to include specific, trackable and verifiable progress toward meeting the scope of pedestrian needs in its next filing on the MassDOT Snow and Ice Control Program, and to use its own Pedestrian Plan commitments as the baseline for reporting. 

At the end of December 2022, MassDOT released an update, which includes these passages: 

  • “Chapter 1 provides an update on MassDOT’s roadway lane-miles and describes new measures to build capacity to address the snow and ice removal needs on sidewalks and pedestrian facilities as identified in the 2019 Pedestrian Transportation Plan and as requested by the WalkBoston following review of the 2022 ESPR SOW Plan.”
  • “New for the 2022/23 winter, MassDOT plans to hire more ‘seasonal’ snow and ice employees that report directly to MassDOT to help with sidewalk clearing as well as other activities. MassDOT will continue to evaluate vendor reimbursement rates and pay codes to enlist more contractors for sidewalk maintenance services and better reflect the variable snow removal efforts for large storms versus smaller storms. MassDOT also provides grant funding of up to $50,000 to help municipalities purchase snow removal equipment for pedestrian and bicyclist facilities through its Shared Streets and Spaces Grant Program. Details on eligible projects can be found at the following link: https://www.mass.gov/shared-streets-and-spaces-grant-program

We are pleased that MassDOT has made new commitments to improve their maintenance of state owned sidewalks. WalkBoston will follow up with MassDOT at the end of the 2022/23 winter season to learn how the new initiatives have been carried out, whether they have proved successful, and to find out whether the agency will plan any additional adjustments to continue making improvements. Check out the links below to read the report for yourself!


Comments are closed.