Winter is a hot topic at city hall, especially after Mayor Valérie Plante and her administration came under fire for not, as critics have said, responding quickly enough to the latest bout of ice to overtake the streets of Montreal.
To reassure citizens that the city has a handle on snow and ice-removal operations, the Plante administration made some major announcements yesterday about the future of snow-and-ice-removal in Montreal.
First off, the executive committee member in charge of citizen services, Jean-François Parenteau, will be reviewing Montreal’s current snow removal policy. Created about three years ago, Parenteau expects major updates to the policy.
"From next year, you will see marked changes," said Parenteau, reports Le Devoir.
Parenteau won’t make the changes alone. Each and every borough mayor will be consulted on the city’s snow removal policy to discuss what, exactly, needs to be improved.
A round table of experts on snow removal and spokespersons from each borough will also be set up to assess the best practices for clearing snow and ice.
Devoting more funds to snow removal budgets and a promised “proactive approach” to snow/ice removal during bouts of rapidly fluctuating temperatures was also promised by the Plante administration.
But most exciting of all was the announcement that Montreal would be getting a bunch of “ice crusher” machines.
The name basically explains it all, as these machines (which look kind of like a steamroller with spikes) are designed to break up ice along streets and sidewalks.
You can check out an ice crusher in action via the video-tweet below.
Nous ferons l’acquisition de ces broyeurs à glace, que j’appelle affectueusement des « croque-glace », dont les résultats étaient concluants suite à un projet-pilote dans Ville-Marie #polmtl pic.twitter.com/1Harx7VjAZ— Valérie Plante (@Val_Plante) January 31, 2018
Ice-crushers have been tested for the last two years in the Ville-Marie borough and, says Plante, have worked quite well, which is why the mayor plans to roll out the machines across the city.
“This is the type of initiative we need to move forward in order to support all the other efforts,” said Plante, reports Global News.
The exact cost of ice crushers wasn’t revealed but city officials did say the machines would not be too expensive for boroughs to use.