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Letters: Our thanks to the 'snow fairy' of East 19th and work crews across the North Shore

The snow brought out the best in some on the North Shore who worked hard to help out their neighbours
Teevan snow clearing WEB
Ploughed snow remains in large piles at street corners in this image sent in Jan. 6 by Seymour area resident Peter Teevan.

A thank-you to the ‘snow fairy’ of East 19th

Dear Editor:

I am writing this as a grateful thank-you to the unknown “snow fairy” of the 300-block 19th Street East, North Van.

I had been faithfully shovelling after each previous snowfall, and was prepared to do so again after the huge fall this week. Afer looking at the situation, I took my very short morning shower ­– no more than 10 minutes.

Opening the door to go out, I literally had to shake my head. No snow on my porch, stairs, sidewalk or the city sidewalk. I had neither seen nor heard anything. Looking toward the end of the block, I could see what looked like a tall person wearing a safety vest and carrying several tools – unfortunately too distant to hear my thank-you.

Upon further inspection, I could see the whole block had been cleared. I am so grateful for your selfless act of kindness in these troubled times! Thank you!

Kathleen Barrett
City of North Vancouver


Next snowfall: pick up a shovel and help your neighbourhood

Dear Editor:

Winter is well upon us and everybody seems to be talking about snow removal.

Your own staff called it “egregious” that the District of North Vancouver hasn’t legislated single-family homeowners to remove snow on the sidewalks in front of their houses.[Snow Business, Jan. 5 Editorial Viewpoint] The problem I see with that is: probably 75 per cent of single-family homes in the district don’t have a sidewalk!

I see other people commenting online that local governments should legislate that people do this. But here is the thing – why do you need to write to government to ask them to force you to do something you’re already capable of doing?

Just pick up a shovel and get to it! You don’t need the government.

Now me – I don’t have a sidewalk in front of my house. There is one on the opposite side of the street along a DNV-owned berm/greenbelt, so after I shovel out my driveway, and try to help my neighbours with theirs, I take a stab at a stretch of the sidewalk on the other side.

Where do we need enforcement? Well, personally, what I see continuously are private maintenance contractors for nearby multi-family properties using machinery (snow plows) to take snow off private property and put it out on the public roadways – to me that’s not right.

So I say to people, if you are lamenting the fact that you can’t go to the gym, if you’re going out for a run in the middle of all this, if you’re physically able – pick up a shovel and help your neighbourhood.

If the government legislates it, you’re going to have to do it anyway.

Ask not what your municipality can do for you – pick up a shovel and set to.

Peter Teevan

Here’s a suggestion for snow clearing

Dear Editor:

The City and District of North Vancouver have a fleet of lawn mowers used in the summertime that could be fitted with sidewalk plows that will cover great distances of sidewalks in short order; however, they are most likely sitting unused in a storage shed somewhere.

At one time, about 20 years ago, the city did have a Bombardier (I think?) sidewalk plow but it was only around for about one or two years.

James Bong
North Vancouver


Kudos to West Van work crews

Dear Editor:

[On Monday, Jan. 3] around noon, I noticed a flood of water across my driveway. I discovered a small geyser of water squirting upwards from my lawn next to the road. 

I phoned the District of West Vancouver engineering department, and within 20 minutes a smart young man with all the right equipment arrived to assess the problem. 

He summoned a crew, a large van, a huge dump truck and a large backhoe. They dug a deep hole in the road, located the leak, repaired it and refilled the hole, and were all done by 4 p.m

John Peirson
West Vancouver

I doff my cap to public service personnel 

Dear Editor:

At 6:30 a.m. [on Jan. 4], an outside electric cable snapped, plunging my home into darkness.

I barely had time to consider a bitterly cold house and rotting food, for the fire department arrived literally within 10 minutes, and followed soon after by BC Hydro.

C’mon, folks. How often have we berated our municipalities for extravagant taxes and shoddy service?

I doff my cap to our public service personnel, not only for their ultra-efficient work – the entire problem was fixed within one hour – but also for their warmth and friendliness. Yes, at the crack of dawn, they were cheerful.

In future, I will pay my taxes with a less jaundiced attitude. 

Barrie Street
North Vancouver

CNV, please clear that snow and slush at sidewalk intersections

Dear Editor:

Kudos to the City of North Vancouver outside employees for their diligent and efficient snow removal and salting around city hall, the civic plaza and the library.

We can hear the little red snowplow machine out there about 3:30 a.m., every morning, even on Sunday, Dec 26 (maybe Santa gave him Wheaties). Then, workers are there early, 6-7 a.m., 7-8 a.m., completing snow removal and clearing and salting paths for city residents and workers, walking in the area.

Perhaps this same equipment and manpower could be used in "Lonsdale centre" –  to clear all the sidewalk intersections on Lonsdale and St. Georges, and east and west of Lonsdale on the side streets, from 11th Street, through 23rd Street.

Local residents are proudly supporting and shopping at local businesses and stores!

There are pedestrians of all ages, workers, shoppers, disabled on crutches, in wheelchairs, seniors, moms and dads with strollers – trying to visit offices, businesses, retailers, etc. –  who need to feel safe walking in the neighbourhoods.

The relaxing conversation centres on Lonsdale are appreciated. But it is hard for the main snowplows to clear snow, slush and ice at the curbs and sidewalks.  

I know the budgets and manpower have been stretched due to the COVID pandemic, but snow, slush and  ice removal, and safe streets, are also a priority.

Thank you for your attention. Winter is not over!

Betty Escott
City of North Vancouver