With NYC temperatures clocking in at 10-13°F higher than normal this NYE weekend, it’s hard to believe that NYC will see any snow this winter season, but meteorologists are still predicting a frosty, flakey, and slushy winter for NYC, and Mayor Eric Adams along with the Department of Sanitation are gearing up to battle the snow (which is predicted to be heavier than last year’s).
New technology has been unveiled which will modernize and enhance snow cleanup operations this winter.
“With forecasters predicting a snowy winter, we’re revolutionizing how we track our snow operations and using new technology to keep New Yorkers safe,” said Mayor Adams. “We’ve never been more ready for snow season.”
The new technology, dubbed BladeRunner 2.0, replaces outdated technology that first launched in 2015. The technology will centralize the deployment and real-time tracking of snowplows, salt spreaders, and brining vehicles.
Once snow makes its way to the forecast DSNY will activate its snow command center which shows operators color-coded maps of neighborhoods to track snow cleanup operations around the city. Green neighborhoods on the map mean the snow has been cleared, while red neighborhoods mean plows haven’t gotten there yet.
According to Adams, the new system will clear the snow throughout all five boroughs in a more fair and equitable way.
“There is no longer a system of first-, second-, and third-tier streets with different communities receiving different levels of service. Now, every street in all five boroughs is on a plow and salt route,” stated Adams.
Beyond the technology, DSNY Commissioner Jessica Tisch stated that the city also has the highest headcount of sanitation workers in decades, including “600 more than the last time [they] fought snow.” Plus, half a billion dollars has been spent on new sanitation trucks.
According to CBS News, New Yorkers are on board with the announcement, with one stating “Thumbs up. Yes. Absolutely, 100% a good investment,” and another adding “I think it could work. I think it’s a very good investment.”
Once the snow is in the city’s past and the spring blooms begin to poke through the ground, BladeRunner 2.0 will continue to be used to track DSNY collection and cleaning operations.
As always, New Yorkers are urged to follow along at PlowNYC to track the progress of snow removal vehicles and report if your block hasn’t been cleaned yet.