Archive for Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Work continues to get Lawrence streets back to normal

Street maintenance supervisor tells City Commission what’s been done, still to come

City crews used heavy equipment to remove snow near 10th and Vermont Saturday, Dec. 26, 2009. A several-day storm dumped more than 7 inches of snow on Lawrence.

City crews used heavy equipment to remove snow near 10th and Vermont Saturday, Dec. 26, 2009. A several-day storm dumped more than 7 inches of snow on Lawrence.

December 29, 2009


City crews to continue street work

Lawrence city crews will continue to work to clear all the now from neighborhood streets. Cars in streets and blowing snow made the process more complicated. Enlarge video

City plows making progress

Lawrence says it's getting a handle on a storm that posed problems for much of the weekend because of high winds and plentiful snowfall. Enlarge video

Not done yet.

The city’s snow plow supervisor assured city commissioners Tuesday that his crews were still battling to remove the snow from Lawrence’s streets.

“We’re still out working the neighborhoods,” said Tom Orzulak, the city’s street maintenance supervisor. “It has just been a lot of hard work. I know there have been a lot of complaints, and a lot of people aren’t happy with what they’ve ended up with, but it is difficult when you are working in neighborhoods.”

Orzulak told commissioners that the city’s street clearing operations were complicated by the large amount of snow — about 8.5 inches — the drifting nature of the snow, and the fact large amounts of residents park their cars on the streets.

Orzulak said crews now are focusing on trying to widen the paths that have been cleared on residential streets, but that comes with the risk of covering up driveways that residents have recently shoveled.

City commissioners at their weekly meeting told Orzulak they were largely pleased with the city’s snow plowing operations.

“Taking care of 810-lane miles of roadway with the vehicles that we have, it was pretty incredible to see that we were pretty much business as usual on Monday morning following a major event,” said City Commissioner Mike Amyx.

City Commissioner Mike Dever said he wanted city crews to focus on widening driving paths in the city to improve traffic safety. He said the amount of time it took to for city crews to get to residential streets was longer than expected, but was understandable given the snowfall amounts.

“It was a great bonding experience,” Dever said. “People had to work with each other. Those with four-wheel drives and those without. Some of us will reconsider owning one in the future after this.”

Orzulak said he expects cold temperatures to allow the snow to stick around for many days. That means crews next week will focus on hauling off snow from the sides of many streets, Orzulak said.

“We have a pile of snow at the city lot as big as any I’ve seen in 20 years,” Orzulak said. “If we have another big snow, we’re going to have to find another place to put it. I’m working on Plan B already.”

City crews are keeping an eye on an approaching storm. Orzulak said crews were expected to go back to around-the-clock shifts Tuesday night in anticipation of snowfall that was forecast for Wednesday morning.


mr_right_wing 8 years, 2 months ago

Someone could make a killing by selling those Eskimo snow shoes right now! (You know, the ones that look like you're walking on tennis rackets?)

yankeevet 8 years, 2 months ago

They are piling huge mounds of snow on the street corners; which make it difficult too see when pulling out on the highway; a definate safety hazard.............

Leslie Swearingen 8 years, 2 months ago

They should take that snow to South Park, or to other parks and have a snow sculpture contest. I bet we have a lot of artists in Lawrence who could make something really good. Have a contest in the Journal World.

ashmole 8 years, 2 months ago

I'm glad the city commissioners are so pleased with the snow clearing for this storm. "Nice job, Brownie!" It's also nice if they can ride around in Hummers and can afford to miss a day or two of work to "bond" with their buddies in the snow. It would be nice, however, if they thought about the rest of us and took the complaints of tax-payers and voters more seriously. It seems that the commission will only really listen when a developer or a "bio-tech" welfare-queen wants a handout from the city. For plain folks who just want clear streets and accountability, they could care less.

West_Sider 8 years, 2 months ago

This global warming is killing me. I guess I need to make the leap and buy a snowblower.

spirit_level 8 years, 2 months ago

I want to thank the city crews for their phenomenal work. I'm certain they would have preferred staying home and spending time with friends and family, but their hard work and dedication has made the roads safer for all of us. Thank you!

Frank A Janzen 8 years, 2 months ago

When I lived in Brattleboro, Vermont, they loaded the snow in trucks and dumped it in the river.

been_there 8 years, 2 months ago

"They should take that snow to South Park, or to other parks and have a snow sculpture contest" I remember they used to have snowman contests in the park with the train.

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