This Much Snow

this much snow
Perfectly preserved pile cut away on top of garbage can on north side of house. Each inch a throb in my back.

While some of the incomplete plowing on the South Side probably resulted from the hard pack that accumulates almost immediately in places where people are the workers and not the bosses, it was pretty lame compared to how many itsy bitsy East Side streets were already clear and dry tonight. The South Side probably sees more traffic in a day than those neighborhoods see in a month. I hope those East Side folks are contributing as much to the local economy to justify their clean streets.

Regardless, kudos to all the people in Elmwood who did their part and kept the streets clear for the plows. I had a welling of South Side pride, with all but the abandoned house (owner went to prison for trying to have his wife killed) having clear sidewalks. This was a goodly amount of snow to move.

The biggest plus was being able to chat with the counter staff on what normally would have been a crazy-packed Sunday at the Liberty Elm.

9 thoughts on “This Much Snow”

  1. Personally, I have no idea how Providence distributes its public services, but perhaps one cause for what you saw is that the roads between Blackstone and Hope are often fairly wide streets, making them easier to maneuver and plow. The homes there also usually have long driveways and/or garages to put cars. Not necessary the case in South Providence.

    I live on a street with many triple deckers where it’s tough for everyone to get their cars off the street. Tail ends stick out into the sidewalks, plows do their best to get close to the curb, but those tail ends are a little close. Thus, we end up with mainly a single strip of hard pack snow down the center of the street. Of course, with sand spread on the top. It’s a hill, so it can be rather amusing to watch people try and climb it from a dead stop at the bottom.

    Oh, and just an FYI, the city has one whole side of Thayer in the business district roped off today. Brown construction? Who knows why, but it’s at least two blocks of no parking on one side of the street. Merry Christmas Thayer Street businesses.

  2. Sounds like my generalization of the entire east side isn’t a fit – especially if Thayer wasn’t plowed well, which doesn’t do much to help the small businesses on the east side.

    I should clarify by saying that the neighborhoods between Blackstone Blvd. and Hope were pretty pristine compared to the mess of hard pack that still exists on pretty major east-west routes connecting Broad and Elmwood.

    My primary concern is not the specifics of streets but how we, as taxpayers, determine how our public services and transportation choices are distributed.

  3. Taking the bus this morning (#42) from Pawtucket, I looked at each street as I passed them along Hope St. I saw no pavement other than on Rochambeau which is a major throughway due to the fire station near Hope and Rochambeau.

    Your generalization of the East Side is off-base on this one.

    A Bucket Worker

  4. matthew lawrence

    the thayer street area was usually pretty awful, plow-wise. camp street’s usually okay, though.

  5. Should public services like plowing be distributed based on the tax base, population, or a formula that factors in both?

    Does one block on the east side contribute more to the city’s coffers than the entire stretch of Adelaide or Lenox or other fairly mixed multi and single family streets on the south side?

    I don’t know what the ward by ward tax break out is, but I can guarantee that more folks in my neighborhood were in situations where missing work was just not an option, and yet getting out of our busy streets was more difficult.

    Doesn’t make east siders jerks or do nothings, just reflects an economics that may not be serving Providence as well as other approaches to allocating public services.

    Of course, if we had more transportation choices in the state, what neighborhood gets plowed when would matter less.

    As a fairly recent transplant, I’ll be interested in learning more about where Providence city tax dollars are coming from and where they are spent.

  6. Where are you on the east side? Neighborhoods off of Blackstone Blvd. and Hope were spic and span. I was up on the east side for a friend’s holiday open house, but as a homeowner and taxpayer on the south side, I take note of how city services are being distributed. Could be that the Blackstone Blvd. neighborhood folks are paying out of pocket for some additional plowing services, but I suspect it is a matter of class – which probably reflects the importance of the tax base in that area of the city.

    I don’t know how the numbers work out in Providence yet.

    Just ironic that in the neighborhoods with a higher concentration of folks who have no choice about going to work, getting to work was that much more difficult.

  7. yeah, those jerks on the east side don’t do nuthin’ for providence…..except pay a shitload of taxes.

  8. Hey Elmwood dude – the streets around my east side house were far from clear and dry, and I am far from a boss. but what were you doing on the east side anyway? just taking a survey of street cleaning efforts or contributing to the local economy at one of the stores or restaurants up our way? hope the sidewalk I shoveled helped you get around to spend some dollars

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