Street Cleaning Season Begins Monday Morning
Bright orange cardboard signs heralding the start of Chicago’s street cleaning season began popping up on trees, light poles, and sign posts at the end of last week in anticipation of the season’s traditional April 1st start.
But while April 1st is the official start for the city’s blue street sweepers to begin scrubbing the flotsam and jetsam from Chicago streets, because the 1st falls on a Sunday, street cleaning actually begins Monday morning at 9 AM.
Drivers who ignore or forget about the orange signs on the street where their vehicle is parked, face returning to see a $50 ticket on their windshield.
“Keeping the streets clean is critical for allowing safe travel for motorists and for sustaining effective storm water management in our sewer system,” said Chicago Department of Streets and Sanitation Commissioner Thomas G. Byrne. “We are asking residents to support our street cleaning efforts by obeying any posted parking regulations.”
Motorists should remember on most residential streets, street cleaning is enforced from 9 AM until 3 PM. Shorter enforcement windows may occur on streets with metered parking where end times range from noon to 2 PM.
Drivers face being cited during the posted time frame even though the street may already have been swept. Car owners should always wait until signs are removed or the posted end time has elapsed before parking their cars.
Often main thoroughfares with high concentrations or retail spaces will have weekly street sweeping from 7 AM to 9 AM on the same day every week. Drivers should be vigilant about looking for signs regulating street sweeping on these streets.
Chicago’s street cleaning season officially runs form April 1st through October 31st, although in some areas of the city where permanent signs are posted will have street sweeping as late as November 30th.
Although temporary orange signs are supposed to be posted at least 24 hours in advance of when a street is scheduled to be swept, there are several ways to get more of an advanced warning.
For more of a heads up on street sweeping dates, you can check the city’s Streets and Sanitation website which has maps and schedules for each ward. These schedules finally got posted over the weekend although they were supposed to be available several days earlier according to S&S.
You can also consult with your local ward office. Some aldermen provide printed schedules for the front of your refrigerator or a family bulletin board. It’s also a good idea to copy street cleaning dates into your cell phone’s calender with proper alerts and/or post them on the family calendar at home.
Several alderman offer free text and email alert services.
Alderman Scott Waguespack’s 32nd ward is serving as the pilot ward for a new service called TktTxt which will not only send text and email alerts for street cleaning but for a wide array of other driving and parking related events.
This includes reminders for Chicago city stickers, drivers license and license plate renewal, alerts for temporary parking restrictions or tow zones, emergency traffic alerts, street closures due to construction, festivals or special events, as well as for Wrigley Field night games and events and even more.
The new service while being debuted in the 32nd ward plans to expand to all 50 wards.
For more tips and information on avoiding street cleaning tickets, check out this site’s post, “Parking Ticket 101: Street Cleaning.”
Post updated at 2:15 PM on 4/2/12