The Village of Oak Park | 123 Madison St.  Oak Park, IL 60302 |

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Help maintain walkable blocks this winter

A walkable neighborhood has all kinds of benefits - from boosting health and reducing stress, to limiting carbon emissions and caring for the land.

Oak Park residents can do their part to care for their neighbors by helping to ensure their block is safe for walking year-round.

Here are some ways to create safe sidewalks for all this winter:

  1. Drive carefully! Stop and look twice before proceeding at stop signs. Never text and drive. Did you know that traffic accidents around town were analyzed as part of the Climate Ready Oak Park report? Click here to see the report
  2. Get digging when it snows. Uncleared sidewalks and intersections make it dangerous, or even impossible, for people with disabilities and older adults to safely walk. Village ordinance requires snow and ice to be removed from the public sidewalk within 24 hours following any snow, sleet or freezing rain. Being a good neighbor is important, too, so property owners are urged to help those who may need help clearing a sidewalk. Click here for more information.
  3. Use salt thoughtfully, and choose an environmentally friendly option. Excess salt may damage plants and can be dangerous for pets and other wildlife. damages plants, poisons pets and other wildlife and reduces the lifespan of pavement. Click here for more information from the University of Illinois Extension.
  4. Trim away branches and bushes hanging into sidewalks. They can endanger people using wheelchairs or who have vision impairments. Click here for information about local rules related to trimming.
  5. Band with neighbors to organize a snow shovel brigade. Make a plan to clear curb cuts at the ends of your block after the plows come through, bus stops on your street, and sidewalks in front of homes of your elderly neighbors. Click here for a news story about how one Chicago neighborhood works together when it snows.
  6. Try this Walkability Checklist with your family. Click here to download the checklist.

Walkable neighborhoods can be powerful tools for equity and climate action.

To learn more, read the Transportation, Community Health and Parks, Plants and Biodiversity sections of Climate Ready Oak Park, the comprehensive and long-term sustainability plan adopted by the Village in 2022.