Where is my sidewalk plow?

Stock photo of a sidewalk plow.

An after hours twitter question posed to Mayor Christian Provenzano last night made him aware that any commute on foot on a section of North street is nearly impossible.

He responded quickly and informed the complainant he would provide them the policy.

“There are more kilometers of sidewalk than the city can clear,” said Provenzano in reply. He then requested she send him an e-mail and he would provide the policy.

That policy spells out the different criteria including type of street, if it’s on a school or transit route and area’s around seniors’ homes are good examples of what will be plowed for sure.

During a severe snow event the city could be forced to call a snow emergency and that changes the plan and how things get done again.

If you want to know if your street is due or qualifies to have the sidewalk plowed there is an interactive map available from the city. Sidewalk Plowing Address Lookup Map (arcgis.com)

The full city policy and how they have decided since 2016 on which street gets treatment is located here PURPOSE (saultstemarie.ca).

City of Sault Ste. Marie map of what sidewalks are plowed.


  1. Jim no one said both sides should be done. Get your head out of your posterior.

    Furthermore, whether one chooses to drive or walk (I do both as I walk my dog daily — I know exercise is foreign to some people) has 0 bearing on municipal taxes which are property value based.

    I personally don’t care if both sides of a street get cleared. I would like a single north south walkway that I don’t have to take a 1 – 2km detour to reach so I don’t have to worry about winter tire warriors blazing down the narrowly plowed street.

    I think if the city can put money towards paying off a 40m dollar loan for something that benefits only a small portion of the population half the year, partially fund a crappy plaza downtown and pay over double market value for a torn down strip club, maybe they can squeeze a little bit more on gas and sand, and leverage their workers during weeks without snow.

    What annoys most about the article is the mayor’s dismissive attitude. Yeah there’s a policy, but it needs work.

    And Dave, the issue isn’t taxes. It’s that we’re paying more for less service because the city thinks its scope is larger than it is. Further to that, the city employs engineers at a good cost, but pays consultants endlessly. (at some point I would hope there would be *some* inhouse expertise we could lean on!) If we’re being run fiscally, I don’t mind increases in taxes.

  2. I’ve been arguing with the city for two years now. On my street they used to plow one side of the sidewalk then Suddenly stopped. Apparently a neighbour complained and didn’t want their sidewalk plowed and snow thrown on their lawn so they just stopped plowing it. Instead of consulting others they just stopped. We have a lot of children on our street and a school one street over. My son has to wait in the road for his bus now. This seriously pisses me off. I pay a lot of taxes in my neighbourhood and my son has to wait in the road at an intersection for his bus. You better believe if anything every happened I have kept all of my correspondence and the city will be held responsible.

    • Keep fighting. Neighbour should be ashamed. In some municipalities it’s up to the property owner by law to keep the sidewalk clear. I’ve started keeping mine clear just out of courtesy to the mailman and my front yard isn’t terribly large.

  3. Guess those who walk should be paying less taxes than those who drive as this wouldn’t fly with roadways, so why does it fly for walkways? If anything it’s a greater danger for the sidewalks not to be plowed as it results in pedestrians walking on the roadways… another flawed logic of our city! And maybe if we didn’t pay the city works staff 26+ an hour to start we’d be able to afford things… city jobs are way too high wage wise for the services provided

    • Pretty sure those who walk do pay less as in nl car payment so no taxes on the purchase, no gas taxes, no tire taxes, no license fee or taxes.
      So they’re good right?
      If pedestrians follow the rules and drivers do then there is no issue.
      Maybe the city can stop welfare payments to people who don’t work at all and keep paying those who do work a salary in compensation for what they do

  4. Well David Root it did not bother them to grossly overpay for that land without consulting taxpayers. Council must realize that the needs have to be supplied before the wants. But if or when a pedestrian gets injured or worse killed because they are forced to walk on the road which one of these councilors is going to step up to the plate and take responsibility.

    • If the sidewalks aren’t plowed then don’t walk where it could be dangerous.
      It’s obvious that the homeowners on the North Street hill piled the snow from their driveway on to the sidewalk. That is illegal and their liability.
      A$#holes who do that should be fined.

  5. That’s utter bs. They used to do both sides of streets in my area up until 3 years ago. Now they both sides of some streets, none on others and even 1 side of half of some streets!

    I understand not wanting to pay OT to get it done right away, but it hasn’t snowed in a week. They could be out there now clearing the neglected larger streets that don’t even have a side cleared.

    If we can’t afford to do this, then maybe we can’t afford the twin pads, the downtown plaza, etc.

      • No David, you’re far off the mark.
        People were complaining about tax hike after hike while services were constantly being cut and inefficient city spending increased.
        If services improved and/or increased and quality of life improved then people would be better able to understand tax hikes.
        Realistically, this city is rotting and spending is seemingly misguided, foolish and lacking accountability.

    • The problem is the methodology behind which sidewalks are cleared, it lacks common sense.
      It’s common to find sidewalks cleared that don’t lead to other sidewalks, or pathways partially cleared that don’t lead to other sidewalks unless you climb over a massive snowbank.
      The concept of sidewalks is the same for roads – a pedestrian route leading somewhere. In actuality here the sidewalks are an ineffective and haphazard pathwork.

    • Which presents another problem – this city has a lack proper crosswalks at logical locations. Sault Ste Marie has a pretty high rate of pedestrians being hit by cars (and hit & runs).
      It’s not always about being lazy. This city is planned with little to no regard for pedestrians, cyclists and people with a disability.

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