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Winter Control

Although winter weather is often random and unpredictable, City of Barrie snow removal efforts are not. The City is committed to providing a high level of snow removal service throughout the winter season. Using a combination of City staff and contractors, plowing, sanding and salting is performed each winter with consideration to safety, environmental and budget concerns.

NOTICE regarding assistance with flooding that may occur on streets:

  • Residents can help to protect themselves from flooding by removing snow and ice from drains or catch basins that are usually located at lower points near the curb of the road. 
  • An easy way to find the catch basin closest to your house is to type in your address in Google maps and go to street view to view the location.
  • If anyone needs assistance with clearing catch basins, they can contact our Roads, Parks & Fleet Dept. at 705-739-4255.

Overnight On-Street Parking

As per the City of Barrie Overnight Parking By-law, parking is not permitted on most City of Barrie streets from 12:01am–7:00am, December 1st through March 31st (3am–6am within the Downtown Business Improvement Area). This ensures the City can completely clear streets of snow and that large emergency vehicles can get down the street. Outside of this time period, overnight on-street parking will not be permitted should a "Winter Maintenance Event" be declared (posted on this webpage, Facebook, and Twitter).

Levels of Service

The City of Barrie has developed carefully planned levels of winter road service to combat the diverse weather conditions we see every winter. A combination of City-owned trucks and contracted units provide effective snow plowing services to Barrie roads through the priority and secondary route system we have created (see chart below and Discover Barrie map). 

This system assigns priority to all major roads with the highest traffic in the city. To ensure the safety of drivers and pedestrians, these major routes are serviced on a 24/7 basis when necessary. Secondary routes (all residential streets in the city) are attended to regularly, but less often than priority routes (as per chart below).

With a system of service based around snow levels and maintenance times, we can ensure clean and safe roads are maintained efficiently. Eight contract road plows will maintain priority routes 24/7; City-owned units are responsible for secondary and residential routes.

Service Information

Priority Routes
(Bare Pavement)
MAP

  • 5cm: approximate level of  fallen snow for road crews to be deployed
  • Cleanup to be completed approximately 6 hours after end of snowfall
  • Maintain road surfaces by keeping them as bare as possible through continual use of all assigned staff, equipment and materials required for the conditions

Secondary Routes
(Snow-packed Roads)
MAP

  • 8cm: approximate level of  fallen snow for road crews to be deployed
  • Cleanup to be completed approximately 12 hours after end of snowfall
  • Maintain road surfaces in a snow packed condition during a storm by use of all assigned workers, equipment and materials (i.e. sand/salt mixture etc…)

Priority Sidewalk Routes
MAP

  • 5cm: approximate level of  fallen snow for road crews to be deployed
  • Maintain sidewalks in a snow packed condition

Secondary  Sidewalk Routes
MAP

  • 8cm: approximate level of  fallen snow for road crews to be deployed
  • Maintain sidewalks in a snow packed condition
View roads by priority level on Discover Barrie

City's Responsibilities

The City's responsibilities include 1370 km of road, 570 km of sidewalks,  25 parking lots, 72 crosswalks, 113 bus shelters, 708 bus stops, and  Downtown sidewalk intersections.

Downtown & Allandale Procedures 

During winter months, City crews will periodically perform snow removal procedures in the downtown area and portions of Allandale to allow access to parking meters and free movement of traffic (both vehicular and pedestrian).

When snow removal operations are underway, the City will temporarily bag the parking meters. This NO PARKING ban applies to all residents. Vehicles that interfere with the removal of snow can be ticketed and towed.

Bus Stops & Crosswalks

A contractor has been hired to clear snow from all bus stops and crosswalks.

Sidewalks

Sidewalks in the Central Business District (i.e. Dunlop St., Collier St., Mulcaster St. and High St., & intervening streets) are cleared by the adjoining property owners as required by City by-law. The remaining sidewalks are cleared by City crews. The City of Barrie anticipates all sidewalks will be plowed at least once within 24 hours. Quick Tip for sidewalk maintenance: try to keep vehicles parked away from sidewalks so both our road and sidewalks plows can better clean the roads.

With sidewalks of various shapes and sizes, we use an entire arsenal of tools for sidewalk maintenance including rotary brooms, v-blade plows, and blowers. Using different tools allows us to safely and properly maintain winter sidewalks in two ways: 1. Helps to reduce sod damage caused by sidewalk plows; 2. Allows for more extensive maintenance of different sized and shaped sidewalks. 

Please note:

  • Pedestrian walkways are not maintained for winter operations.
  • The City does not perform snow removal operations around super mailboxes; please contact Canada Post for snow removal in this area.
  • Beamish Construction has been contracted to perform winter maintenance on highways and off ramps, including the 400 series north of County Road 89, and 2 lane highways around Barrie (#90, 26 and 27). Beamish Construction may be contacted at (705) 727- 1359 or (705) 727-1333 or contact the Ministry of Transportation at 1-800-265-5407 for more information.

Residents' Responsibilities

Winter Parking Restrictions

As per the City of Barrie Overnight Parking By-law, parking is not permitted on most City of Barrie streets from 12:01am–7:00am, December 1st through March 31st (3am–6am within the Downtown Business Improvement Area). This ensures the City can completely clear streets of snow and that large emergency vehicles can get down the street.

Your Children’s Safety

Please ensure that your children do not play where snow is piled at the side of the road or in the middle of courts where snowplow operators may not see them.

Winter Walking

During winter months, snow and ice make walking very difficult. Here are some suggestions to help keep winter walking safe for everyone:

  • Clear snow and ice away from catch basins and hydrants in front of your property.
  • When clearing snow from parking lots do not push it into adjacent public land.
  • During and immediately after a snowstorm, reduce your driving speed to account for slippery road conditions and snow clearing operations.
  • During thaws, reduce your driving speed to avoid splashing pedestrians and prevent water from splashing onto the sidewalk where it will freeze into ice and become a hazard.
  • Please do not park any vehicles over the sidewalk. Even a partially blocked sidewalk prevents the plows from doing their job properly.
  • Please ensure that any structures are placed well back of the property line.

Don’t forget to remove your parked car from the street during snow removal operations. Parked cars make plowing difficult and sometimes impossible. With your help, winter maintenance crews can plow faster and more efficiently and you will reduce the chances of having to dig your car out of a snow bank.

Driveways

Piling snow to the right side of the driveway can help reduce the amount of snow pushed back into the driveway. Standing in the driveway and looking at the street determines the right side.

Clearing Snow on Your Property

The City devotes a great deal of resources to keep your streets and sidewalks clear of snow and ice after. Residents often deposit snow and ice from their property onto the street or sidewalk not realizing that this contravenes municipal regulations, contributes to unsafe driving and walking conditions and increases the cost of providing winter road maintenance.

When you are clearing snow from your driveway, please keep this snow on your property. Your efforts in helping us make winter driving and walking safe for everyone are appreciated. (See City By-law)

Help Keep Fire Hydrants Clear

Barrie has approximately 3,700 hydrants that need to be cleared every time there is a snow fall. The City works hard to keep hydrants clear and available for emergencies, however with heavy snow falls, this can be challenging. Residents are asked to assist by keeping fire hydrants on their properties clear of snow. Hydrants should have a clearing of one metre (3 ft.) all around and there should be a clear path to the street to ensure firefighters can readily access them. A hydrant can help save lives and property in your neighbourhood, if you see a hydrant that’s buried this winter, please do the neighbourly thing and dig it out. If you need assistance with hydrant snow removal please call 705-792-7920.

Damage to Sod

Sidewalk plowing presents many challenges. It is difficult to tell exactly where the edge of the sidewalk is and when the ground is not frozen some sod damage may occur. Damage to City sod, pavement and City owned trees will be repaired in the spring. Call the Road & Transportation Division at (705) 739-4255 when you notice the damage and your address will be added to a list for repair when materials are available.

To facilitate the removal of snow from sidewalks and to prevent damage to private property, residents are required not to place cars, fences, posts, hedges, shrubs, driveway curbs or other obstructions on the road allowance. The City will not be responsible for damage to items placed on City property by property owners.


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