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Unplowed side streets turn into ice rinks

9:54 PM, Feb 25, 2013   |    comments
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AURORA - Debbie Taylor knows not to expect a snow plow in her neighborhood.

"It's very difficult on these side streets. It's an ice skating rink," Taylor said.

Taylor, a retired high school principal, doesn't mind the snow covered streets.

"But that's because I'm retired," Taylor said.

The City of Aurora generally doesn't plow residential neighborhoods like Taylor's.

Aurora snow crews will only come to a residential street if someone reports a safety hazard.

That's usually the case in Denver, but not this time.

The high volume of snow, timing of the storm, and several days of freezing temperatures prompted Denver public works to plow its 14,000 blocks of residential streets for just the third time in 6 years.

"The Denver residential snow fleet has gone out," said Denver Public Works spokesperson Emily Williams.

Denver has 70 large plows and 90 smaller plows, plus it contracts with an additional 30 smaller plows.

"This allows the big plows to do our main streets and residential plows to hit the residential streets," Williams said.

Folks who live in Centennial will never live more than a quarter mile from a fully plowed street.

Every plow in Centennial is equipped with a GPS device. The city has been honored with state and national awards for its "Route Optimization" snow plow program.

"What that means is we make more efficient and effective the deployment of our snow plow fleet. Even in the worst conditions, our snow plow truck drivers are staying on track," said Deputy City Manager Wayne Reed.

In many cities, including Denver, Aurora, and Boulder you have 24 hours from the time the snow stops to shovel your sidewalk.

In Denver, inspectors will be out checking sidewalks Tuesday morning.

In Centennial, there is no city ordinance requiring you to shovel but there is a "snow hero" program recognizing good neighbors who do their part to keep the sidewalks clear.

(KUSA-TV © 2013 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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