Winter Maintenance Review

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Consultation has concluded

City of Markham  Snow Plow

The City of Markham is dedicated to ensuring that our residents are able to move about in their daily lives, no matter what the weather or conditions. As another winter season has passed, we would like to hear your comments on how we did. Please fill out the survey below and give us your feedback through the What's Your Story or Places sections.


Markham staff is currently preparing a Winter Maintenance Workshop with Council consisting of two sessions, that will look at the current service level, costs, and implications of winter operations. We will include your feedback in the presentation

The City of Markham is dedicated to ensuring that our residents are able to move about in their daily lives, no matter what the weather or conditions. As another winter season has passed, we would like to hear your comments on how we did. Please fill out the survey below and give us your feedback through the What's Your Story or Places sections.


Markham staff is currently preparing a Winter Maintenance Workshop with Council consisting of two sessions, that will look at the current service level, costs, and implications of winter operations. We will include your feedback in the presentation to Council.


Do you know the City classifies our roads based on the traffic volume and its characteristics?

Our roads consists of three classifications: Primary, Secondary and Local.

  • Primary roads carry high traffic volumes and include transit and emergency routes for ambulance, fire and police.
  • Secondary roads connect to primary road and include hills, curves and access points.
  • Local roads carry very low traffic volume and are not intended to carry through traffic.


Do you know that the Province has legislated Minimum Maintenance Standards for winter maintenance? Do you know that the City exceeds these provincial standards already?

The Provincial legislation O.Reg. 239/02 requires local road plowing operations to start at 10 cm of snow fall, and to be completed within 24 hours. Markham's road plowing starts when snowfall reaches or exceeds 7.5 cm (3 inches) and is completed within 12 to 16 hours. For our Primary roads, we dispatch our crew at the start of the snow fall to achieve bare surface condition.

Find out more about the Province's legislated standards, and the City's standards on winter maintenance in the Documents section to the right.


Want to know the classification of the street you live on? and find out winter operations status?

We have a winter maintenance application/website that can help you; go to the right hand side and give it a try! Simply put in your street address and the classification will be shown on the top right corner.


Hate those piles of snow at the end of your driveway the plows make? Those are called windrows. Do you know that the City provides a Windrow Assistance Program for residents that are over 60 years of age or with a disability?

Find out about our Windrow Assistance Program in the Documents section to the right, and see if you qualify.


Each winter the question of whether or not the City should include city-wide windrow removal comes up. Do you know...

It’s estimated that adding windrow removal services to every home (excluding condos/apartments/rear lane housing) would increase property taxes significantly. Timing of the windrow clearing would depend on the plowing operations. Roads are plowed based on road classification with primary and secondary roads plowed first to permit traffic flow and access for emergency vehicles then local roads are plowed. Windrow clearing only happens after the road is plowed – this could take from 4 to 8 hours to occur. It would not be immediate and due to the size of city’s road network would be impossible to every home plowed and windrow cleared before our residents leave for work. When storms occur will impact the timing of when the plows and windrow clearing occurs on your road. Windrow clearing would only include one car width and would not include windrows from sidewalk plows.


Tell your story

We would like to hear from you.  Please enter any comments or suggested improvements to the City of Markham's winter maintenance operations.


THIS TOOL IS NOW CLOSED FOR INPUT

Thank you for taking the time to submit a story.

CLOSED: This discussion has concluded.
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    Trapped Every Morning

    by Matthew, over 1 year ago

    I have a sidewalk through my driveway, so in the winter, the end of my driveway is a disaster thanks in part to the sidewalk plow.  I live on a main road, so I would expect the big road plows the come regularly, and I understand the build-up at the end of my driveway is going to happen.

    For the sidewalks, I clean my whole driveway, and the sidewalks of my house and neighbours on both sides, but the sidewalk plow always manages to dump a ton of snow (and dirt ripped up from my lawn) on my driveway.  And... Continue reading

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    3rd party snowplow contractual agreements need work to better support residents

    by BryanM, over 1 year ago

    Last year, my car was damaged by a contracted snowplow operator, VBN Paving. After submitting my claim to the City, they determined it was the 3rd party at fault and after that, was able to offer no assistance in getting the claim resolved, even after providing me with proof from their GIS that it was VBN Paving's equipment on my street. The contractor routinely ignored emails and request for updates and even denied the claim, even after the City declared they were the party to pursue the claim with. The current process needs to be changed to better support residents... Continue reading

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    Rouge street Plowing doesn't exist

    by Stephen Reid, over 1 year ago

    It seems that the residents who live at the bottom of Rouge Street and Dryden court are not a priority to Markham plows.  I think I saw a plow twice last winter.   Rouge street is a narrow street to start with because of it's age and once the snow comes it becomes a single lane with huge ruts of ice.   I saw one grader last winter and a small 1 ton with a plow.  The side walk plow makes it even worse when they push the balance of the snow back onto the street making things worse. It would be... Continue reading

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    Past Season

    by Home@Markham, over 1 year ago

    Snow plowing service on my court was less than satisfactory this past season. When we eventually did get snow removal, it was often very sloppy and incomplete. For example, the loop at the end of the court was often not completely plowed, leaving a ridge or large areas that were not cleared. In the main stretch, only a single path was plowed in the middle of the road instead of plowing closer to the curbs to provide for two way traffic. This was done even though cars were not parked on the road. Speaking of parked cars during snow removal... Continue reading

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    Leverage weather data and snowplow sensors to more efficiently plow our roads

    by Canuck, over 1 year ago

    I recently heard about an interesting pilot project in Vaughan whereby they used weather data and software to more efficiently deploy when to salt their roads. They were able to reduce the amount of salt they used by utilising some data science. 

    I also think the Markham could apply the same intelligence to its snowplowing efficiency. Not all roads need the same level of snowplowing attention. As an example, 7.5CM may not be that tough to navigate it its a flat road; however, in the case of my road that has quite a steep grade it can often become impassable... Continue reading

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    Snow Removal Needs Improvement

    by Catherine, over 1 year ago

    I  want to start by saying that the crews that remove the snow have a thankless job and do it well.  My concerns are about the city's policies pertaining to snow removal.

    I live on a street that for years was "local" and got almost no snow removal.  Unless enough snow fell the plow did not come by.  So, we would get repeated snow falls of a less than 7.5 cm and each layer of snow would build up on the layer below and be compressed by the cars and turned into a skating rink.  We received no salt or... Continue reading

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    Recurring problems with winter maintenance on Mill Race Court.

    by Peter, over 1 year ago

    The performance of the City of Markham's sub contractor responsible for plowing Mill Race Court was awful. I reported this earlier this year  but never had my complaint acknowledged by the city. Check this out, you have a record of it. Poor winter maintenance has been a problem in the past on our street. Several years ago I complained about snow removal which led to a follow up  conversation with the local (Crupi?) supervisor and the problem was dealt with.  The problem returned this past winter and my suspicion is that the driver/operator who had our route over the past... Continue reading

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    Dead-end streets deserve more rapid attention

    by skalmuk, over 1 year ago

    I live on a dead-end street and our street is often not plowed for several hours (and sometimes more than a day) after other "local" streets are plowed. I understand that special equipment is required to clear the parking spaces in the middle of our court, but it would be helpful if a standard plow could at least clear the majority of the road so that we could get in and out. If it's a matter of man-power, I'd suggest diverting some of the sidewalk plowing crews -- the sidewalks are usually plowed several times before our road is addressed.

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    Great Winter Service

    over 1 year ago

    Thanks to all the staff who helped to clear the snow from our streets this winter. - A Markham Resident

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    Thanks a lot but please plow the smaller streets and courts too overnight.

    over 1 year ago

    Niloufer Engineer (Facebook) - Thanks a lot but please plow the smaller streets and courts too overnight. We also have to get to work or miss a day's pay as today. It happens each year and a quicker response to smaller streets will be highly appreciated. Thank you.

    Reply from City of Markham (Facebook) - Plows are dispatched early today at 5:30am. All roads will be plowed but it will take time. The progress of road and sidewalk plows can be viewed via Winter Maintenance App on the City’s website under Winter Road Services.