They cover all of Syracuse and give city residents a path to walk.
Currently, property owners are responsible for maintaining sidewalks, but a new proposal would change that. It would put the city in charge of removing snow and making repairs to the sidewalks.
For the first year, property owners wouldn’t have to pay, but after that, there will a fee that increases by $20 each year until the fee maxes out at $100 in six years.
"I think it would be wonderful if the city could do that because some of us are getting old and it gets heavy and doesn’t get done like it should,” said Syracuse resident Monica Minnoe.
“My dad’s a disabled vet,” said Dereck Becker. “He just got his leg amputated. My mom’s 60 years old, she’s getting older. I feel, you know, especially when I’m not here, that would be a good thing, especially if we have kids walking down and going to school.”
City officials introduced a supplemental sidewalk snow removal program in 2018 that helped plow more than 20 miles of sidewalks. Some are skeptical of the effectiveness of a program would include all city sidewalks.
“I have mixed feelings about that,” said Syracuse resident Jim Emmons. “I think it’s probably a good deal but that the city, by the time it plows the sidewalk, might take a little longer than the average resident to shovel his or her sidewalk.”
In the program, the DPW will prioritize pedestrian safety, working on sidewalks that give access to schools and grocery stores ahead of others.
The Syracuse Common Council decided to table the proposal on Monday and will vote on a later date.