Council approves 48-hour window for sidewalk clearing

January 19, 2022

Council approves 48-hour window for sidewalk clearing

An updated Sidewalk Clearing Bylaw will mean safer conditions for pedestrians in Strathcona County neighbourhoods. On January 18, 2022, Council voted to amend the Sidewalk Clearing Bylaw from eight days to 48 hours for clearing sidewalks around private properties, effective immediately.

“We have an active community, and we believe a 48-hour timeframe will better support residents to move safely through residential areas in the winter,” says Mayor Rod Frank. “The eight-day timeframe, which resets every time it snows again, is not effective and results in many sidewalks going uncleared for lengthy periods of time.”

The bylaw’s expectation is a flat, level path that is wide enough for strollers or walkers to safely pass by. Where ice or conditions make clearing difficult, residents are expected to apply some type of material for traction, such as rock chips.

The updated bylaw will be enforced based on complaints submitted through County Connect. Reported locations will be inspected after the 48-hour window, and the homeowner will be issued a notice to clear their sidewalk within 24 hours. If the sidewalk is not cleared after 24 hours, contracted services will be used to remove the snow at the homeowner’s expense. The cost could range from $200 to $500, and the fees will be added to the homeowner’s property taxes.

This is the same complaint-based process used under the previous bylaw; the only change is the timeframe.

The previous eight-day window was aligned with the County’s timelines for clearing all County-maintained sidewalks and trails; the new timeframe aligns with bylaws from neighbouring municipalities.

“We know the 48-hour expectation is a significant change for our residents, and our goal is not to fine people for non-compliance,” said Mayor Frank. “We hope residents will follow the new timeline and support their neighbours, wherever possible, to keep our neighbourhoods safe and active.”

The County will be reviewing the current priority approach and timelines for clearing more than 200 km of public sidewalks and trails, with public engagement on this topic planned for spring 2022.

For more information about the bylaw, visit

Contact: Strathcona County Communications, 780-410-6595