SD&G snowplowing will be shuffled to favour commuter routes

In this February 2019, file photo, snow drifts across County Road 31 near Winchester, Ont. This county road and two others in SD&G will be getting more focused treatment this winter to make sure they are clear for commuters. (Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston, File)

SD&G – The county will be reorganizing its snowplowing routes this winter to favour more plowing, salting and sanding of three main SD&G commuter routes.

They are County Road 31 north of Winchester, County Road 2 into Cornwall (from Long Sault and Summerstown into the county-city boundary) and County Road 34 south of Alexandria.

Part of that plan will involve giving responsibility of County Road 3 between Winchester and County Road 7 to the Township of North Dundas.

The changes follow high-level and extensive discussions during county council meetings. It’s not expected to affect the budget that much as the other options looked at, such as buying more plows with operating costs of $150,000 per plow or changing the entire shift schedule.

The only drawback will be more deadheading – ends of secondary roads blocked with ridges of snow – and less intersection clearing.

The plan got a consensus nod from county council this morning (Monday), which includes drawing up an agreement with North Dundas on County Road 3.

“Any improvement is a step in the right direction,” Coun. Allan Armstrong (North Dundas) noted.

Coun. Tony Fraser (North Dundas) added that shift changes would be a “bigger monster to tackle” in the future.

The changes will be revisited in February.