Snow Removal

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The Department of Public Works is dedicated to providing residents with professional snow removal services. As a general rule, while snow is still falling, plow trucks are working on designated main snow routes. Once the snow stops, the plow trucks transition into plowing all of the neighborhoods. Parking restrictions are not actively enforced in neighborhoods until snowfall stops and an issued residential snow ordinance goes into effect. However, residents are encouraged not to park on residential streets during snowfall when possible.  

A partnership between residents and the City is critical to achieve improved services.  The City has invested in larger, more efficient snow removal equipment that will clear most residential street with just 2 passes.

Receive Notifications

You can stay up-to-date through the following methods:

Text Message Alerts
Subscribe by texting 96000 with the keyword “DMSNOW” for general updates, or “DMODDSNOW” for Odd/Even parking updates.

Email Alerts
Subscribe to email notifications for snow routes, residential streets and Odd/Even parking updates by visiting DSM.city/subscribe.

Social Media Updates
Follow us on Facebook by searching for “Des Moines Public Works,” or follow us on Twitter at @DMDPW.

Contact Us
Call us at any time at (515) 283-4950 with any questions or concerns you have about snow removal operations.

Enforcement

Vehicles Off Street During Snow Removal

All residents are required to move their vehicles off the street during snow removal operations.  Click here to access the Snow and Ice Control Policy.

According to Chapter 114 of the Municipal Code, “No parking will be allowed on residential streets during snow removal operations.” Vehicles parked on the street will receive a $35 fine and may be subject to towing. Tickets can be appealed using the Parking Ticket Appeal process.

Moving vehicles off the street has many benefits:

  • Plow time is reduced by almost 33%. 
  • Clearing streets curb-to-curb results in better quality snow removal with less rework. 
  • Not moving your vehicle causes a delay in plowing, which increases the amount of snow and ice compacted by traffic. Additional salt is required to melt the compacted snow and ice.

Sidewalk Snow Removal

To help ensure that sidewalks are cleared for pedestrian use, the City of Des Moines requires residents to remove snow and ice from sidewalks within 48 hours following the end of a snowfall. Property owners who do not comply are subject to a $50 administrative penalty for a first offense and larger penalties for repeat violations.

To report a sidewalk that hasn’t been cleared after 48 hours, please call our Public Works 24-Hour Customer Service Center at (515) 283-4950 or file a report online using this form.

Deposit of Snow on Public Property

Keep in mind that snow removed from parking lots and driveways cannot be placed on the street or public right-of-way. Property owners who do not comply, whether they hire a contractor or not, are subject to a $100 administrative penalty for a first offense and large penalties for repeat violations.

Timeline for Snow Removal

Visit the National Weather Service’s website for the latest, hourly snowfall forecast.

Timeline based on weather Operation Ordinance and Parking Restrictions
During snowfall Plowing Snow Routes Snow removal efforts are underway along Snow Routes. Vehicles may not be parked on Snow Route streets at this time.
3 hours after snowfall ends Plowing Residential Streets Snow removal efforts are underway on Residential Streets. Vehicles may not be parked on residential streets.
24 hours after snowfall ends All Clear Snow removal efforts are not currently underway. Residents are able to park on the street based on standard parking regulations for each street.

7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on designated days
(see Facebook for notices)

Odd/Even Plowing Snow removal efforts are underway in Odd/Even Neighborhoods. Between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m., cars must be parked on the correct side of the street. 
Even date? Cars must be parked on the side of the street with even numbered houses. 
Odd dates? Cars must park on the side of the street with odd numbered houses.
For more information on Odd/Even Neighborhoods, visit Show Me My House.

To report a street that needs to be treated or plowed following the completion of snow removal operations, please call our Public Works 24-Hour Customer Service Center at 

(515) 283-4950

 or file a report at 

DSM.city/myDSMmobile

. Be prepared to provide the exact location.

Snow Removal Street Categories

Snow removal on residential streets, city-wide, begins shortly after the snow ends. For these purposes, the streets are grouped in six different categories:

  • These routes are given first priority for salt application and snow removal. Snow Routes are normally plowed when snow accumulations exceed one inch. All residential properties are within four blocks of a Snow Route. Remember, when emergency snow or ice removal operations are in progress, you may not park your vehicle on a Snow Route.
  • Central Business District (Downtown)
    • There are no weather-related parking restrictions in the central business district of downtown Des Moines during normal snow plow operations.
  • Snow Districts Streets
    • Residents are encouraged to park off residential streets during snowfall. After the snowfall ends, residential streets will be plowed full width (curb-to-curb) where possible. At that time, parking will be restricted to allow room for plow drivers to clear as much as possible.
  • Alley Routes
    • The alley routes that provide primary access to residential properties will be cleared prior to the end of the snowfall to facilitate off-street parking during snow removal operations in residential areas.
  • Cul-De-Sac
    • Special equipment may be needed to plow cul-de-sacs or dead-end streets. Residents may notice these streets are not plowed at the same time as other streets.
  • Odd/Even Parking
    • For neighborhoods with limited amounts of off-street parking, the Des Moines City Council has implemented a concept known as Odd/Even Side Snow Parking Zones. For more information on Odd/Even Neighborhoods, visit Show Me My House.

    Odd/Even Parking

    About Odd/Even Parking
    For neighborhoods with limited amounts of off-street parking, the City Council has established a concept known as Odd/Even Side Snow Parking Zones. Related signage is posted for five neighborhoods (Carpenter, Drake, Drake Park, River Bend and Sherman Hill).

    On calendar days ending in odd numbers (1, 3, 5, 7, 9), on-street parking is allowed in front of addresses ending in an odd number. On even number days, park in front of addresses ending in an even number (0, 2, 4, 6, 8) to avoid being ticketed or possibly towed.

    The Public Works Director decides when to start enforcing our Citywide and Odd/Even Plowing restrictions. The Director’s decision is based on total accumulation, prevailing conditions and near future forecasts.

    For more information on Odd/Even Neighborhoods, visit Show Me My House.

    Source

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