I am a resident of a subdivision in the southwest portion of the city who has grown disgusted by my neighbors’ abject refusal to clear their sidewalks of snow. Clearly, the Jan. 5 snowstorm and ensuing cold hindered snow removal. And in some locations the private contractors didn’t help matters by pushing snow from the streets onto the sidewalks. But once the weather warmed, few residents attempted to clear their sidewalks. After the initial melt, I thought that with a blank slate, folks would clear the smaller, more powdery accumulations that followed. I couldn’t have been more wrong. These are not elderly or otherwise infirm residents; they are healthy men, in Carhartt-type coveralls and knee-high boots, who use their large, gas-powered snow throwers to clear their driveways multiple times during a single snowfall, but who ignore the sidewalks in front of their own homes. As an aside, I’ve cleared snow from the sidewalks in front of as many as seven homes between mine and the bus stop. It’s never taken more than 40 minutes, so imagine how easy it would be if everybody simply did his or her own part. Our homeowners’ association does not have a bylaw governing snow and ice removal. Sadly, we seem to be more concerned about the atrocity of seeing our neighbors’ trashcans and Weber grills than our children’s safety.
It’s a sad day when our kids are forced to walk in the icy streets because homeowners refuse to make sidewalks passable for them. People decry government intervention, yet, for the sake of public safety, they won’t assume responsibility for a task that would take them 10 minutes.
Betsy Harvey, 46032