Milwaukee snow emergency means alternate side or no parking

The Milwaukee Department of Public Works declared a snow emergency Sunday, Jan. 31 through Wednesday, Feb. 3, meaning no parking is allowed on arterial streets from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. and alternate side parking is required on side streets from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m.

Posted street signs take precedence. Please read the street signs for winter parking instructions before you park. 

DPW officials said in an update Sunday afternoon plow drivers were focusing on residential areas and main routes simultaneously, with garbage trucks addressing side streets "for curb-to-curb clearing" and salt trucks clearing the main routes. A DPW spokesman said the plan was to redeploy them to neighborhoods as the arterials' driving lanes and turn lanes were properly addressed.

As of Sunday afternoon, there were 270 pieces of DPW equipment clearing snow; with the plan to continue until late evening, when salt trucks will clear routes aided by the snow emergency.

"I wasn’t expecting this much," said Solier Gonzalez.

Near 10th and Washington in Milwaukee, Gonzalez put the final touches on his sidewalk Sunday afternoon.

Snow in Milwaukee

"My grandparents have the snowblowers so they came across and they came helped us," said Gonzalez. "We had him do it because it’s back-breaking in a sense." 

Gonzalez, whose grandparents live just a few houses over, said the family has their snow clearing operation down pat. 

"I’ve been here for over 30 years," said Gonzalez. "My family has been established here collectively like, 80 years, so we’re all walking distance." 

Once the snowblower came through, he cleaned up the edges with a shovel, even lending a hand to neighbors.

"It seems like we have a little competition -- who is the first one who could shovel the most snow in front of the neighbors' houses," said Ronald Hunter.

Ronald Hunter

Hunter said he also likes to get in on the action -- finding joy in digging out.

"Some people were complaining about the amount of snow, but for some of us, it’s also a benefit because we get to reconnect with people," said Hunter.

As some struggled to get into parking spaces, others needed help getting out.

"It’s a constant battle back and forth," said Gonzalez.

DPW officials asked for patience so plow drivers could cover as much ground as possible. 

"The whole purpose of this is so we can get to the curb, and open up the parking spaces for people be able to park once the snowstorm is done," said Jeff Polenske, commissioner of public works.

Milwaukee snow emergency

Sunday evening (Jan. 31) to Monday evening (Feb. 1)

All residents who park overnight on a Milwaukee side street must move their vehicles to the ODD numbered side of the street by 10 p.m. on Sunday evening through 6:00 a.m. on Monday morning. There is no parking allowed on arterials (main streets) from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m.

Monday evening (Feb. 1) to Tuesday morning (Feb. 2) -- Snow emergency suspended

Standard overnight parking regulations will resume the overnight of Monday evening to Tuesday morning. There is no parking allowed on arterials (main streets) from 2 a.m. to 6 a.m.

Tuesday evening (Feb. 2) to Wednesday morning (Feb. 3) -- Snow emergency in effect

All residents who park overnight on a Milwaukee side street must move their vehicles to the EVEN numbered side of the street by 10 p.m. on Tuesday evening through 6:00 a.m. on Wednesday morning. There is no parking allowed on arterials (main streets) from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m.

NOTE: While a snow emergency and its alternate side parking requirement generally lasts two consecutive evenings so that both sides of the street can be plowed to the curb, this winter storm coincides with back-to-back odd-numbered dates (Jan. 31 and Feb. 1). Therefore, DPW will pause the snow emergency parking regulation during Monday overnight then resume them the following evening on Feb. 2.

Need to find parking?

A resource the city makes available are city lots and Milwaukee Public Schools lots. DPW officials noted: "These are heavily underutilized." To find one near you, visit the city's website. 

To confirm the arterials which do not allow any parking and for additional parking restriction information visit the city's website or call 414-286-CITY (-2489).

Snowfall totals from Jan. 30-31 winter storm that hit SE Wisconsin

The National Weather Service collected data from the snowfall that impacted southeastern Wisconsin from Saturday, Jan. 30 through Sunday, Jan. 31.