Thunder Bay

Ignace, Ont., gets 'snowgate' to stop plow from filling in your driveway

The next time it snows in Ignace, Ont., homeowners won't have to shovel what the grader has left behind.
The municipal grader in Ignace, Ont., is now outfitted with a snowgate, which keeps snow windrows from being built up at the end of a driveway. (Township Municipality/Facebook)

The next time it snows in Ignace, Ont., homeowners won't have to shovel what the grader has left behind.

The township, about 250 kilometres west of Thunder Bay and with a population of about 1,200, bought a 'snowgate' for its grader.

The piece of heavy equipment used to plow the roads in town, will have a gate that lowers on the end of the blade, blocking snow from filling the mouth of the driveway.

"We've had it out, and tested it out a couple of times, scraping down the main roads," said Petrina Taylor-Hertz.

"This will alleviate the windrow, or all that large pieces of ice at the end of your driveway." 

The gate cost $15,000, and is easy to operate, Taylor-Hertz said. The operator of the grader flips a switch, and the gate lowers when going in front of a driveway. Once past the entrance, the gate comes up, pushing snow to the side of the road.

"A couple of our department heads got together, and talked about getting a snowgate for the snowplow, or the grader attachment, and it has alleviated a lot of problems for our elderly residents in our community, by taking the windrow away at the end of the driveway."

"In the big scheme of things, I believe it was money well spent," she said, with the township getting positive feedback thus far. She said communities from across the country were contacting Ignace to ask about the device.

The township also purchased a similar device for its front-end loader, which will also keep windrows away from the end of driveways, she said.

About the Author

Jeff Walters


Born and raised in Thunder Bay, Jeff is proud to work in his hometown, as well as throughout northwestern Ontario. Away from work, you can find him skiing (on water or snow), curling, out at the lake or flying.


To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.