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Sidewalk Snow Removal Facts… and a few responses

This morning I received an email from the Elmwood Village Association that is an interesting reminder about our responsibilities to keep our sidewalks plowed during the winter. Typically, I would venture to say that far less than half of the homeowners abide by the following City Code. And it gets even worse if a house is not owner occupied. Not to mention a number of commercial building/business owners could give a darn about the condition of their sidewalks.

Code: The City Code states that property owners are responsible for sidewalk snow removal in front of their properties by 9am. Owners of properties where snow is not cleared are subject to fines.

BRO: Has anyone ever heard of anyone actually getting fined?

Code: Residential properties that are not cleared can be reported at the City of Buffalo’s ‘Call and Resolution Center’ by calling 311 or 716-851-4890 or online at

BRO: Has anyone ever tried calling this number to report someone for snow removal? If so, what happened?

Code: For commercial properties that have not been cleared, there is also an option of contacting the ‘Call and Resolution Center’. Another option is to simply ask the property owners to place clear the sidewalk. They can be informed, if they don’t know, that they are responsible and subject to fines for noncompliance. In some districts, a merchant’s association might be an added resource, either volunteering to clear sidewalks to acting as a clearinghouse for report/complaints.

BRO: It boggles my mind that businesses would not clear their own sidewalks, knowing full well that customers have a hard time navigating unkempt snowy walkways.

Code: Neighbors, especially with snowblowers, may wish to voluntarily assist residents who are physically unable to clear their own sidewalks because they are disabled or older.

BRO: Common sense goes a long way in the City of Good Neighbors

NFTA: It is the responsibility of the nearest property owner to clear bus stops and shelters of snow and ice. As residents travel beyond the city limits for work, shopping, worship, etc., they may wish to report bus stops that have not been cleared. The contact information for other municipalities can be found at

BRO: I almost spit my coffee out when I read this one, I was laughing so hard. It’s hard enough to get some people to shovel their own sidewalks. It’s all well and good to put the blame for uncleared bus stops on neighbors – sounds like an easy out for the NFTA when it comes to getting sued for a slip and fall.

*Info provided by the Bicycle Pedestrian Advisory Board


Written by queenseyes


Newell Nussbaumer is 'queenseyes' - Eyes of the Queen City and Founder of Buffalo Rising. Co-founder Elmwood Avenue Festival of the Arts. Co-founder Powder Keg Festival that built the world's largest ice maze (Guinness Book of World Records). Instigator behind Emerald Beach at the Erie Basin Marina. Co-created Flurrious! winter festival. Co-creator of Rusty Chain Beer. Instigator behind Saturday Artisan Market (SAM) at Canalside, Buffalo Porchfest, and Paint vs. Paint. Founder of The Peddler retro and vintage market on Elmwood. Instigator behind Liberty Hound @ Canalside. Throws The Witches Ball at Statler City, the Hertel Alley Street Art Festival, and The Flutterby Festival.

Contact Newell Nussbaumer |

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