'Worst in 60 years': Snow-covered sidewalks leave Winnipegger stumped

With many of Winnipeg’s sidewalks in covered in a thick layer of snow, Alan Smith says the city’s sidewalk clearing is the worst he’s seen in decades.

St. James man says he doesn’t understand why his sidewalk hasn’t been cleared in more than 20 days

Alan Smith says the sidewalk in his St. James neighbourhood hasn’t been cleared since Dec. 27. (Jaison Empson/CBC)

With many of Winnipeg's sidewalks covered by a thick layer of snow, Alan Smith says the city's clearing efforts are the worst he's seen in decades.

He says the sidewalks in his St. James neighbourhood haven't been cleared since Dec. 27 — more than 20 days ago.

"I've lived in the city 60 years and I'd classify this as the worst in 60 years," he said.

There was exceptional snowfall in December and the white stuff didn't stop when the new year rolled in.

Despite calls to 311, Smith said there's been no improvement to his sidewalks on Ferry Road and they look more like a path through the woods than a city walkway. That means Smith, who uses a cane, is left walking on the street.

"I went out once last week and that's all I've been out," he said.

"I don't want to try to walk down the sidewalk and all of these mounds along the road, you have to climb on that to get to the road. So you might as well stay in the house."

He said the way the city's been dealing with the snow doesn't make any sense to him, and that efforts to clear streets have moved snow back onto the sidewalk.

"I just don't know why they kind of kill themselves trying to shovel one, clean one and then they bury something else. Then they have to come back and try to unbury something that they've just buried," he said.

Alan Smith says the condition of sidewalks in his neighbourhood has left him trapped inside his house. (Jaison Empson/CBC)

Smith said it's Winnipeg and the city should better prepared for the challenges of winter weather.

"It's your money. It's my money. It's the city's money and they are wasting it on stupidity," he said.

A City of Winnipeg spokesperson said Smith's sidewalks had already been scheduled for a re-plow, and the work had begun on Tuesday afternoon.

Sidewalks may require re-plowing for a number of reasons, such as weather, street plowing that pushed some snow from the boulevard onto the sidewalk or to widen or touch up an earlier plow, the spokesperson added. The work is done based on inspections.