Snow Shoveling Rules
Keeping our sidewalks free of ice and snow is the neighborly thing to do, and it’s the law. For your own benefit and to help your neighbors, people pushing strollers or using wheelchairs, and the many people in Minneapolis who walk, please do your part.
Minneapolis Ordinance requires that property owners clear sidewalks after the end of a snowfall within
- 24 hours for homes and duplexes
- Four daytime hours for apartment and commercial buildings (daytime hours begin at 8 am)
When you shovel snow and clear ice
- Shovel the sidewalks on all sides of your property, the full width of the sidewalk down to the bare pavement.
- Remove all ice from sidewalks. After the sidewalk is cleared, sprinkling a little sand can help prevent slipping on frosty sidewalks.
- Pile snow into your yard and boulevard. It’s against the law to shovel snow into streets and alleys.
- If you have corner property, clear curb cuts at corners and crosswalks to the street gutter. You are not required to clear snow ridges or piles left by the plows beyond the gutter – City crews sometimes return to do that, but if they can’t your neighbors would appreciate it if you could clear an opening to get through.
Avoid a ticket
- If the City of Minneapolis gets a complaint or discovers that a sidewalk is not properly cleared, Public Works will inspect the sidewalk and give the property owners a chance to clear it.
- If the sidewalk has not been cleared upon re-inspection, the property owner may be issued a citation with a fine.
- Crews will remove the snow and ice from the sidewalk. Property owners will be billed for this service, and unpaid bills will be added to property tax statements.
- You are as responsible for clearing ice on your sidewalk as well as snow. Ice can be more dangerous and intimidating than snow.
- The sooner and more completely you shovel, the less likely ice will form.
- Arrange for someone to shovel while you are on vacation.
- Shovel around your garbage carts and recycling bins. If you don't, the City will do it for you and charge a fee. For information, see Solid Waste & Recycling.
- For a fee, community groups shovel snow for senior citizens and people with disabilities. Call 211, for a list of these groups or United Way at 651-291-0211.
- The City offers free sidewalk sand for Minneapolis residents.
Want to go the extra mile?
- Report snow and ice on sidewalks.
- Are there neighbors on your street who are elderly, have a disability or may have a hard time shoveling for any reason? Work with your neighbors to give a hand and ensure your entire block is safe and accessible to all.
- Download this snow shoveling flyer (pdf) to tell others about the rules and importance of sidewalk snow clearance.
Last updated Nov 4, 2018