Snow removal on sidewalks and streets

Last updated January 31, 2024

Snow removal on sidewalks and streets facilitates travel in Montréal during winter. Here is everything you need to know about municipal snow removal services, including plowing on sidewalks, the progress of snow loading operations, and tips for facilitating operations.

Snow removal operations

Here are the stages involved in snow removal operations:

  • salt and gravel spreading as soon as the roads and sidewalks become slippery
  • plowing as soon as there is 2.5 cm of snow on the ground
  • loading as soon as there is 10 to 15 cm of snow on the ground

These operations are carried out continuously until the streets and sidewalks are cleared and safe. The amount of precipitation, weather conditions and equipment failure may slow the pace of operations.

 Snow is cleared from city streets according to three levels of priority:

  1. Major thoroughfares, access to health institutions and schools, priority bus routes and reserved lanes (such as Blvd Pie-IX express bus service) , major shopping streets (such as Sherbrooke, Lacordaire, Henri-Bourassa), etc.
  2. Collector streets, other bus routes, local shopping streets (such as Cadillac, Bernard, Villeray), etc.
  3. Local streets (such as De Normanville, Beausoleil, Rameau), industrial areas, etc.

Tools to track the progress of snow removal operations

Facilitating the execution of snow removal operations

Here are some tips for facilitating snow removal operations:

  • Clear your front walk
    Don’t shovel snow onto the street, near fire hydrants or onto the sidewalk.
  • Comply with the collections schedule
    Place your garbage cans, recycling and waste bins or bags on the curb at the designated time so as not to hinder operations.
  • Park your bicycle where it won’t be at risk
    Don’t leave your bicycle on the sidewalk to prevent damage to it or to municipal equipment.
  • Comply with the signage
    Don’t block narrow streets during snow removal operations, or park in locations where parking is prohibited during snow loading operations.

Snow removal from narrow streets

When the weather forecast calls for a snowfall of 15 cm or more, or when there’s enough snow on the ground to warrant it, signs are posted to prohibit parking on the right-hand side of the street. The objective is to allow snow removal operations and the passage of emergency vehicles. The left-hand side of the street is then reserved strictly for holders of the narrow street parking sticker, from 7 p.m. to 9 a.m.

Snow removal in specific alleys 

Snow removal operations are carried out in an alley if it is paved and meets one of the following conditions : 

  • It runs parallel to a commercial thoroughfare.
  • Commercial deliveries are carried out in the alley.
  • The alley is an access route for the Service de sécurité incendie de Montréal:
    • Access roads are located near large buildings such as hospitals.
    • There are connections for a sprinkler system and piping.  
  • It is a public alley, with the main entrance to a home or a business.

If your alley does not meet these criteria, a private contractor must be hired to carry our snow removal operations. 

Depending on the borough, snow removal operations in alleys are carried out in conjunction with snow removal on streets or at the end of loading operations.

Material damage caused by snow removal operations

If the damage was caused by a snow removal operation, you can file a claim with the Ville de Montréal.

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