For many of us, memories of Snowmageddon and Snoverkill are fading along with the melting snow. But the region’s recent snowstorms are still affecting the lives of pedestrians in Columbia, Maryland. Even worse, these pedestrians are schoolkids who are being forced to risk their safety when walking to class.
This morning, about two weeks after the storms, WTOP reported that students on their way to Hammond High School are walking in the road because of large mounds of snow still covering the sidewalks along several blocks of their commute. Residents have not seen any Public Works staff attending to the blockage, and property owners are unable to remove the snow themselves because it’s icy, extremely heavy, and they have nowhere to put it.
This is still more evidence that cities and towns need to develop more pedestrian-friendly approaches to snow removal. Specifically, as we mentioned in our post on sidewalk snow removal best practices, local sidewalk clearance prioritization systems should dovetail with national Safe Routes to School efforts, focusing on pathways utilized by students.
Make sure you speak out about these crucial safety issues at the Committee on Public Works and Transportation’s sidewalk snow removal hearing, this Friday at 11:00 am in the John A. Wilson Building, 1350 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Room 500.