Winter maintenance on streets and sidewalks

When cold weather is forecasted, our essential workers in Engineering services begin planning consistent and coordinated efforts for snow and ice treatments on priority routes around the city.

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Snow and ice treatment locations

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We have over 100 vehicles and equipment for snow and ice treatment along with 3000 tonnes of salt at our yards, and hundreds of personnel available to deploy as required.

Our priority locations for snow and ice treatment are:

  • Major roads
  • Bus routes
  • Emergency access routes (including five major hospitals and two health care facilities)
  • Bridges and viaducts (roads, sidewalks, and staircases)
  • School routes
  • Four key pedestrian pathways
    • False Creek Seawall (from Burrard Bridge south side to north side)*
    • Coal Harbour Seawall (from Burrard St to Alberni St)
    • Arbutus Greenway
    • Central Valley Greenway*

*Sections of these routes are adjacent to private property and are cleared by the property owner as per the Street and Traffic By-law

  • 16 most-used bike routes
  • Arterial bus stops and corner ramps

The following are not included in our snow response:

  • Residential side streets (excluding locations on priority routes)
  • Sidewalks adjacent to non-City owned property
  • Laneways (unless required for City collection operations)

We'll treat locations as resources allow to reduce further impact.

The Vancouver Park Board

The Vancouver Park Board’s snow and ice control schedule ensures major park access roads, primary parking areas, and perimeter and direct internal park pathways in the downtown area are maintained.

Shovel your sidewalk

Vancouver property owners and occupants are responsible for removing all snow and ice from the full width of sidewalks in front of and, if on a corner lot, alongside their property each day by 10am when there is snow on the sidewalks or freezing temperatures.

 If you don't clear snow and ice by 10am the next day after snowfall, you may get a $250 fine. If snow and ice stays there for over 24 hours, the fine could be $750.

To keep our sidewalks and streets safe for people walking, cycling, and driving:

  • Shovel snow onto your property, away from the road and sidewalk by 10am every day
  • Clear storm drains of leaves and snow to prevent flooding
  • Ask someone to clear your sidewalk if you're away or unable to or request a Snow Angel

Owners and occupants who fail to remove snow and ice according to Traffic By-law 2849, section 76 may be subject to escalating tickets, fines, or both.

There is no requirement in the by-laws for snow to be cleared from private property, whether residential or commercial.

On March 31, 2021, City Council approved recommendations to increase the priority for pedestrians during winter weather including:

Review the Council report (379 KB), the Snow and Ice Treatment Policy (110 KB), and Traffic By-law 2849, section 76 below for more information.

Snow and ice concerns

Report sidewalks not cleared of snow and ice

Report non-emergency snow and ice on sidewalks in front of houses and businesses.

Report snow and ice on City streets and sidewalks

Report non-emergency snow and ice on streets and sidewalks in the city.

Volunteer as a Snow Angel

Help seniors and people with limited mobility clear their sidewalks after a snowfall.

Snow removal

By City of Vancouver


  • Shovel your sidewalk

    By City of Vancouver

    All property owners must clear snow and ice from sidewalks around their property by 10:00am every day. Unable to clear the snow? Ask a neighbour for help or request a Snow Angel. Failure to remove snow and ice may result in fines. Learn the rules about snow removal in our Street and Traffic Bylaw (section 76).

  • Prepare your snow gear early

    By City of Vancouver

    Make sure you have shovels and salt before it starts to snow. Double check your winter gear and ensure you have boots that are safe for walking in.

  • Get snow tires

    By City of Vancouver

    If you drive through the winter, consider getting tires with the three-peaked mountain and snowflake symbol or the mud and snow symbol, with at least 3.5mm tread. The Province of BC requires these tires on provincial highways from October 1 to April 30. Learn more about winter tires.

  • Move your car

    By City of Vancouver

    We plow major roads, bus routes, school routes, and emergency routes. When you move your car to a side street or garage, we can make sure snow along these routes is cleared.

  • Avoid driving if you can

    By City of Vancouver

    Check transit schedules at for commuting alternatives.

  • Be safe, be seen

    By City of Vancouver

    In darker, wet weather, visibility is limited and changing road conditions make it harder to see. Wear lights and reflective gear, and make eye contact with other road users. Whether you're walking, biking, rolling, or driving, being mindful about how you travel can help make sure everyone gets home safe. Learn more about our goal for zero traffic-related fatalities.

Weather report

Get the local weather forecast so you know when to expect and plan for snow.

Vehicle emergency preparedness

How to drive safely in a disaster. Vehicle emergency kit.

Shift into winter

It's easy to forget that winter driving is different. Shift into winter with preparation and driving tips from the Winter Driving Safety Alliance.

Volunteer to help in an emergency

Learn how you can volunteer for public events, emergencies, disasters, and help others prepare for an emergency.