Snow removal & ice control

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There is currently no Snow Event Advisory in place.


 

Snow blower naming contest

Name our new snow blower
Help us name this lean, mean snow devouring machine! We’ll pick the top 10 entries and put them to a public vote. The winner will get a deluxe experience, including a photo shoot and demonstration with the snow blower along with a Snow Angels prize pack! Submissions will be accepted until midnight on December 23. Find the full contest rules here.

SUBMIT YOUR NAME SUGGESTION HERE.

Any Kelowna resident can enter – we're excited to hear from Kelowna's youngest residents in particular!


Every Kelowna resident has a role to play when winter snow gets underway. We have a dedicated team out clearing snow from the streets after every snow fall, but you and your shovel are important in keeping Kelowna moving each winter. 

Assist City snow crews by moving your car off the street when the snow flies. It makes snow clearing faster, easier and more effective. 

Snow removal from City streets

We have a four-tier priority system for clearing streets:

Priority One: 

  • Large arterial roads like Gordon Drive, Springfield Road and Lakeshore Road 
  • Main routes through a neighbourhood that carry more than 15,000 vehicles per day 
  • Cleared and sanded within eight hours of snowfall ending 

Priority Two:

  • Collector roads with steep hills, sharp curves, school zones, emergency vehicle stations and transit routes, like Richter Street, Ethel Street south of Springfield Road and the Black Mountain area 
  • Routes carrying 5,000 to 15,000 vehicles each day 
  • Cleared and sanded within 12 hours of snowfall ending 

Priority Three: 

  • Local and residential roads  
  • Cleared and sanded within 48 hours of snowfall ending 

Priority Four: 

  • Residential laneways that allow a secondary access point to properties 
  • Cleared during regular working hours 

We start on priority two roads once priority one routes are complete, and priority three and four streets wait until we finished clearing priority two routes. The schedule resets if more snow falls while clearing is underway – we go back and start working on priority one roads again. 

Snow routes have been established in Academy Way, Black Mountain, Clifton/Magic Estates/Wilden, Dilworth Mountain, Kirschner Mountain, McKinley Beach and areas in the South Mission. Snow route areas have elevated, steep and narrow roadways, or many cul-de-sacs. The parking ban ensures we can clear the roads more quickly, efficiently and effectively. A snow advisory may be called when there is significant snowfall, which will prompt parking bans on snow route area roads. 

Submit a service request if you notice an issue in your area. 

Snow removal from sidewalks

Let’s tackle this together! 

Your role 

Kelowna residents must clear snow and ice off the sidewalks bordering their property within 24 hours of snowfall coming to an end. Please don’t shovel snow onto roadways as it creates hazards for motorists, it can slow City plows and it can even land you with a fine. See Traffic Bylaw #8120 for more on your role in clearing sidewalks. 

Lend a hand and help a neighbour who might need it – be a Snow Angel

Our role 

The City clears snow from the sidewalks surrounding City property. We also clear sidewalks on arterial roads when more than five centimeters of snow falls. 

Submit a service request if you notice an issue in your area. 

Bus stop snow removal

City crews clear bus stops as part of regular street clearing. Bus routes run along priority two streets so they should be cleared within 12 hours of a snowfall coming to an end.  
 
Submit a service request if you notice an issue in your area. 

Bike lane snow removal

We clear active transportation routes within 24 hours of a snowfall. But, gravel pathways and roadway bike lanes are not cleared. See the Snow and Ice Control Policy for details. 
 
Use the Active by Nature map to find what routes get cleared. Click “Turn Map Layer On/Off”, and see the “Cycle Track” and “Shared-Use Pathway, Paved” for routes that are cleared.  
 
Submit a service request if you notice an issue in your area.    

Highways

Highways in Kelowna are not maintained by City of Kelowna snow crews. The Provincial Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure maintains and manages the highways that run through Kelowna.

City crews are hard at work whenever the snow flies. Before, during and after it comes down, we: 

  • Have 50-75 employees out clearing snow and ice 
  • Operate 26 snowplows 
  • Operate ten sidewalk plows on and around City properties 
  • Clear and de-ice around 1,690 lane kilometres 
Snow and Ice - Frequently Asked Questions
How does the City handle icy, slippery roads?

We do a few different things. We sand roads during icy periods to increase traction and we will add a salt brine to the sand in particularly slippery conditions. We apply these carefully because salt can affect sensitive ecosystems and sand can damage vehicles and contributes to poor air quality in spring.  
 
Our Road Weather Information System tracks humidity and air, surface and sub-surface temperature on certain roadways to notify us if they need attention. The system also shows if there is anti-icing treatment left on the road. The anti-icing treatment is a liquid calcium chloride mixture we apply to busy and steep roads ahead of snowfall or predicted icy conditions. It keeps snow and ice from sticking to streets. 
 

What do I do if I can’t clear my driveway?

You can ask a neighbour, friend or family member for help and return the favour by recognizing them as a Snow Angel. Community groups and neighbourhood associations may have suggestions or information included on bulletin boards or in newsletters. Many companies provide snow clearing services and you can find them in the phone book, newspaper or online. 

Why can’t the City remove snow left behind in the entrance to my driveway?

There are around 39,000 driveways in Kelowna. We would need more equipment and staff to clear these, and it would slow us down, especially in residential areas. 

Always pile snow on the left side of your driveway as you shovel it. This is the left side as you face your property. It will give you a better line of sight as you leave your driveway and it will reduce the amount of snow that plows drag across your driveway entrance.

Where do I put my waste and recycle carts during winter?

Find a clear and unobstructed spot on the road for your cart. You may need to clear a space if one isn’t already available. Your cart should be as close to the road as possible without blocking traffic. Putting a bin on each side of your driveway can allow greater access for collection trucks. Carts should be on the street by 7 a.m. on your collection day and there needs to be three feet clearance around each bin to allow for collection. 
 
Visit the Regional District of Central Okanagan for more information on cart placement. 
 

Why do you push snow into the middle of downtown roads?

We pile the snow if the middle of the road so it can be collected and hauled away during the night shift. There aren’t a lot places in downtown Kelowna to pile snow where it won’t disrupt traffic.