Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Downtown Spokane: What To Do With The Snow?

Three years ago when we got a huge dumping of snow was the first time I can remember witnessing the 'berming' of snow in downtown Spokane. Apparently the practice has been around for years though, despite complaints from many that it's unsafe because it only allows drivers to change lanes in the intersections. KXLY News asked the City yesterday what happens next with the berms, and if berming is a common method of snow removal used in other places.


Charles Hansen said...

I remember those berms in Hillyard in the 1950s. The city plowed to the middle then also. They had a loader that went down the middle of the street loading dump trucks. They hauled the snow down to the river near the Green Street Bridge and dumped it in the river. Today they have some benches and picnic tables in that spot by the river.

SRTC Staff said...

The part about the river makes me twitch. It's amazing that back in the day no one thought about the pollution aspect of dumping snow off the road into the river. But times were different then.

Walking the six blocks from the Plaza to the office was a wet, slushy mess this morning by the way, since they started spreading the snow from the berms around and melting it.

Charles Hansen said...

I don't think they used any chemicals on the streets then, just lots and lots of sand, so probably not as much pollution as it would be today, but a lot of road pollution would have been dumped in the river.

SRTC Staff said...

Jeff in our office said he thinks they still dump the snow in the river in some places in Idaho. I'll have to check that out because that's crazy in this day and age.

vanillajane said...

Make snow cones. A lot of them.

About SRTC

SRTC is the federally designated Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for Spokane County. Urbanized areas with populations exceeding 50,000 people are required to have an MPO. SRTC was formed to address the county's transportation planning needs. It provides coordination in planning between the public, cities, small towns, the county, the state, transit providers, and tribes.

SRTC offers services including transportation monitoring, transportation modeling, census information analysis, travel demand forecasting, historical traffic count analysis, geographic information systems, and trip generation rates.