By Carol McCracken (Post # 660)
SNOW was in the weather forecast for Sunday night into Monday and Portland wants all its residents to know that it’s ready for snow whenever it does arrive. Last year was such a breeze, that some believe the weather will be quite different this year – ?
The city has 8,000 tons of salt, thirty-seven plow units ready and public services teams are prepared for 24 hour a day storm operations during which 566 miles of road and 82 miles of sidewalks will be cleared of snow and ice said a recent press release issued by Nicole Clegg of the city.
The city-wide parking ban is of utmost concern – especially for those who park on city streets and especially for those who are relatively new on the Hill. A city-wide parking ban is called when weather impacts the city’s ability to carry out its winter storm operations and ensure that roads are safe for travel. When a parking ban is declared, all vehicles must be off city streets by 10 PM until 6 AM the following day (times may vary depending upon the severity of the weather). Vehciles left on the street during a ban will be towed at the owner’s expense (tow fee – $70, impound fee – $35. ticket cost – $30. and all outstanding tickets must be paid in order to retrive your car). Vehicles will be towed to the city’s impound lot located at the Ocean Gateway International Marine Terminal at 14 Ocean Gateway Pier (phone number 774-3025. )
As in the past, there are a number of places people can park at no charge during a parking ban: The most convenient locations for Hill residents include: all Portland Public School lots EXCEPT the lot at Reiche School; Cutter Street Lots (off the Eastern Prom); and many parking garages in the area are open for parking bans at reduced rates – check them out. Vehicles can begin to park in these designated areas at 5 PM the night a parking ban is declared. Vehicles must be moved from the city lots by 7 AM the morning the ban is lifted.
The city can also declare a Yellow Zone parking ban for the downtown area only, starting at 10 PM and ending at 6 AM. When a yellow ban is announced, parking is prohibited from Franklin Arterial to State Street and Commercial Street to Cumberland Avenue.
Residents and visitors can sign up online at www.portlandmaine.gov to receive email notices from the city when a city-wide parking ban is implemented. People can also get parking ban updates by becoming a fan of Portland Cityline at http;//www.facebook.com/pages/Portland-Cityline/89975485748?v=wall&viewas+1348184770. Motorists can call the parking ban hotline at 879-0300 or check the Time and Temperature sign for up-to-date postings.
The city reminds everyone to avoid driving until roads are clear and safe for travel. Residents are responsible for removing snow from the sidewalk in front of their property within 24 hours of the city ending its plowing operations. If that does not happen, please call 874-8793 to report the specific property.