The city's snow emergency policy is designed to clear streets quickly and effectively during a storm and to guarantee open, passable streets during and after the storm. This is often a difficult task in a city as densely populated as Somerville.
To ensure effective snow removal and avoid such problems, the city has adopted an aggressive policy toward making sure roadways are cleared in advance of a storm so snow plows can do their work. Residents are advised to read the below procedures carefully.
A snow emergency may be declared when four or more inches of snow are predicted
Residents have four hours after the snow declaration to move their cars. Ticketing and towing will begin four hours after the declaration. (More on ticketing and towing below) (Towing before the snow actually hits the ground is necessary to ensure clear streets for the plows)
It is strongly advised that residents move their cars as soon as an emergency is declared in order to avoid any confusion
The Communications Department will notify the community of the snow emergency by notifying the local access television channel (Channel 16 for Comcast customers; Channel 13 for RCN customers) and all major broadcast channels and radio stations
The Somerville Police will make announcements from their vehicles, warning residents to move their cars
Residents may call the 24-hour Snow Line at 617-628-SNOW (7669) to find out when an emergency is in effect
Parking is allowed on the odd-numbered side of the street only unless otherwise posted. Residents with cars on the even side of the street must either move their cars to the odd side or, if they cannot find a space, move to another location (available city lots listed below)
Ticketing of cars parked on the even-numbered side of the street will commence on all streets four hours after the emergency is declared
Towing of cars parked on the even-numbered side of the street will also commence four hours after the emergency is declared. If your car is towed you may retrieve it from Pats Towing 617-776-5810
Fines during a snow emergency:
Failure to Move Car to Proper Side of Street: $100
Tow Zone/Obstructing Snow Plow: $100
Within 10 ft. of Hydrant/Designated Fire Lane: $100
Residents may park in the designated areas listed below during a snow emergency. Once the snow emergency is lifted, vehicles must be removed within two hours, regardless of posted signage. Vehicles parked in municipal and school lots must be cleared and properly plowed.
Argenziano School (290 Washington Streer)
Capuano Early Childhood Center (150 Glen Street)
Kennedy School (5 Cherry Street)
SCAT Municipal Lot, Kiley Barrel Municipal Lot (Union Square)
Cummings School (42 Prescott Street)
healey School (5 Meacham Street)
Brown School (201 Willow Avenue)
West Somerville Neighborhood School (177 Powder House Boulevard)
Winter Hill Community School (115 Sycamore Street)
City Hall Concourse (93 Highland Avenue)
Central Library (79 Highland Avenue)
West Branch LIbrary (40 College Avenue0
All metered municipal parking lots
Municipal Parking Lots
Beuna Vista Lot Buena Vista Road (via Holland St. or Meacham Rd.)
Day Street Lot (Day Street)
Grove Street Lot A (Grove St. at Highland Ave, referred to as "Rite Aid Lot")
Grove Street LOt B (Grove St. east side, between Highland Ave. & Elm St., "Grove Street Lot")
Cutter Square Lot (Elm St./Summer St. at Cutter Ave)
Magoun Square Lot (Broadway at Medford Street)
Winter Hill Lot A (Broadway, noorth side between Fellsway West and Wheatland St.)
Winter Hiil Lot B (Broadway, north side between Wheatland St. Grand St.)
Union Square Lot (Off Washington St., entrance at Washington St./Bonner Ave.)
Prospect St. Lot (Prospect St. at Somerville Ave./Washington St.)
Mount Vernon St. Lot (Broadway between Mount Vernon St. and Mt. Pleasant St.)
Foss Park Lot (Foss Park at Broadway)
Veterans Memorial Skating Rink (rear (581 Somerville Avenue)
Permit parking enforcement resumes twenty-four hours after the snow emergency has been lifted. It is the responsibility of the resident to clean off their vehicle and ensure their Residential or Visitor parking permit is visible. Parking Control Officers are not authorized to remove snow from any vehicle. If the permit is not visible, the vehicle WILL be ticketed for a Permit Parking Violation.
City Ordinance restricts any vehicle from remaining in the same space on any street for a period exceeding 48 hours. This violation will be strictly enforced on both the odd and even sides of the street 48 hours after the snow emergency has been lifted. Failure to comply will result in the ticketing and potential towing of the vehicle.
Residents may NOT put objects on the street to reserve parking spaces.
Sec. 12-18. - Obstacles in streets or sidewalks at night.
No person shall leave any vehicle or any other obstacle or article on any sidewalk or in any public or private way, or place any obstruction in any street at any time, without first obtaining a permit from the commissioner of public works and causing such obstacle, article or obstruction to be lighted and guarded to his or her satisfaction.
Any person to whom a permit is given may be required by the commissioner of public works to furnish security by a bond as provided in section 12-14 for not less than $1,000.00 to protect the city against all liability and loss arising out of such obstruction.
A violation of this section shall result in a fine in accordance with the provisions of section 1-11. Each day the violation exists shall constitute a separate and new violation. This section may be enforced by the commissioner of public works or his or her designee or by any police officer.
This section shall not apply to construction dumpsters. Construction dumpsters are regulated in section 12-77 of this Code.