Winter Operations

During the winter months, the Public Works Dispatch office is open 24-hours a day, reachable at 207-874-8493, and crews are assigned to shifts to respond 24/7 to weather events. Major arterial roadways, hills and intersections are often treated before plowing operations begin, usually when 2” of snow falls. Plow teams concentrate first on major roadways and connectors to move traffic along before heading into residential areas.

The City’s residential sand and salt piles are located at Payson Park next to the ball field and the parking lot of Deering Oaks. The sand and salt pile is for residential use only, contractors are not allowed. Limit of two 5 gallon pails per residence.


  • Commercial property owners are required to remove snow from the sidewalk abutting their property within 12 hours after snow has ceased to fall.
  • All residential property owners are required to remove snow from the sidewalk abutting their property within 18 hours after the City has finished clearing snow from that storm.
  • Encourage citizens to help their neighbors who are physically unable (elderly and disabled) to clear their sidewalks. Elderly and disabled residents who need help with removing snow from sidewalks should contact the City’s Elder Services Department at 207-541-6620.
  • A minimum of four feet is required to be clear of snow and treated for ice on all public sidewalks and sidewalk access ramps. Snow cannot be pushed or dumped from driveways and parking lots onto public access sidewalks and access ramps.
  • To view a map of city sidewalks cleared by the city, click here.
  • Citizens can also consider becoming a volunteer for the Adopt-A-Stop program, which uses volunteers to ensure that bus stops are kept clear.
  • Members of the community are encouraged to help the Portland Fire Department by keeping their neighborhood fire hydrants clear of snow and ice. Citizens are also encouraged to help Public Works by clearing catch basins and storm drains in front of their homes to help prevent water ponding on their streets and in their driveway openings.
  • Parking “off street” or in a nearby parking lot or garage during winter storms greatly helps us clear the snow from our roadways. Please do not push or blow snow onto city streets and sidewalks from driveways and lots. You can help us by clearing snow from nearby catch basins and fire hydrants when possible. This greatly helps if snow turns to rain or wet weather follows.


The City may call for a three types of parking bans if warranted - a citywide ban, a peninsula ban, or a yellow zone ban for the downtown district. Parking bans are called as needed to allow streets to be cleared of snow or ice conditions. Parking bans greatly help snowplowing operations clear snow from our city roadways. For more information, visit Snow Bans.


Use Stay Connected, our email and text message notification service to receive parking ban and other alert information sent directly to you.


Quickly and easily submit violations of snow removal on streets and sidewalks using our Fix It Portland mobile and web app.


Using public transportation or carpooling / ride sharing during winter months helps to reduce traffic and on-street parking.

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