Adopt an Inlet

Monday, January 28, 2019 - 4:14pm

So far this week, City staff have been busy clearing snow from City streets, bike paths, bus stops, and sidewalks. An unavoidable side effect of plow operations is that storm sewer inlets get covered by snow. Normally, this would not be a problem; however normal doesn't appear to apply to weather anymore.

Temperatures are expected to be well below zero most of this week. By the weekend, temperatures are expected to rapidly climb into mid- to high- 30s. Depending on exactly how high the temperatures climb, we may see significant snow melt. We are also seeing the possibility of rain in the forecast. Combined, we could have a lot of water on the ground. This could lead to localized street flooding due to storm sewer inlets covered in snow and ice.

Starting Tuesday, City staff will begin removing snow from inlets at known low points to minimize the chance of flooding. However, there are almost 20,000 inlets in the City’s storm sewer system. It's not feasible for city crews to uncover them all before this weekend. As such, the City is requesting that property owners “adopt” any storm inlets adjacent to their property and help keep it clear of snow. Every inlet helps provide someplace for water to go.

“Throughout these snow events of the post couple of weeks, we’ve reminded everyone that we need to help each other,” said Mayor Soglin. “Residents have stepped up, from keeping tabs on their neighbors, to shoveling out fire hydrants we are working together to get through this. This is another great opportunity to help out!”

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