Ice & Snow Alerts
Winter Weather Policies and Procedures
It is our goal that all streets in Columbia are passable by a front-wheel drive vehicle as soon as possible.
The City of Columbia has more than 1,350 lane miles of streets including 1,100 cul-de-sacs maintained by Public Works. The sheer volume of cul-de-sacs and lane miles makes it necessary to prioritize roads during ice and snow events.
There are 475 lane miles of priority streets, or designated snow routes, that need to be treated/plowed to a near normal condition when winter precipitation occurs. Clearing these high-volume roads to a near normal condition ensures safe passageway to and from highways, hospitals, schools, fire stations, businesses and neighborhood areas. Priority routes are plowed and treated 24 hours per day to get them to a near normal condition; other routes are plowed and treated to a passable condition during normal business hours once priority routes are near normal. If snow reaches 4 inches, all of the City’s 1,350 lane miles will be plowed and treated to a passable condition 24/7 once priority routes are near normal.
Every event is not exactly the same, but generally speaking a typical response occurs in phases:
- Treat bridges, curves, hills and intersections as needed;
- Clear priority routes to “near normal” condition.
- Ensure all other City streets are “passable” by a front-wheel-drive vehicle to facilitate access to priority routes.
- After all priority routes are near normal and all City streets are evaluated as “passable” by a front-wheel-drive vehicle, Street Division plows will respond to specific streets/intersections reported by community members as not passable as resources allow.
Parking Alerts: There is no parking allowed on priority routes when snow accumulates 2 inches or more. Parking Utility staff do their best to warn drivers, but vehicles will be ticketed and towed at the owner’s expense if they are not moved. To be alerted of when enforcement of priority routes will begin, sign up for alerts at Nixle.com or text COLUMBIAPW to 888-777.
- Winter Weather Hub – Quick links to the resources you need
- Snow Fighting Summary – City Channel (Video)
- What is a passable road?
- What is a Designated Snow Route/Priority Route?
- Preparing for Snow Season – A Citizen’s Guide (pdf)
- Council Snow Memo – Nov. 5, 2018
Call: 573.874.2489 / Email: PubW@CoMo.gov