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Physical Plant Department prepares for winter weather

With winter approaching and colder temperatures finally settling in, the Physical Plant Department (PPD) has reviewed and updated a comprehensive snow response plan for UNM.

PPD collaborates with many UNM departments in preparation for inclement weather and campus closures, including Parking &Transportation Services, UNM Police Department, Residence Life & Student Housing, and others to ensure the snow response plans are up-to-date, priority areas are appropriately categorized and the responsibilities of each department are clearly defined and communicated.

The following areas of UNM’s Albuquerque campus have been classified as “critical need” and will be the first part of campus to be cleared during snow removal efforts:

  1.     Camino de Salud from Yale Boulevard to UNM Hospital entrance
  2.     Yale Boulevard from the Duck Pond to Tucker Road
  3.     Tucker Road from University Boulevard to Stanford Drive
  4.     Frontier Avenue from Vassar Drive to UNM Hospital receiving area
  5.     Patient and handicapped parking north of Family Practice, building 234
  6.     Camino de Salud west of University Boulevard
  7.     UNM Police Department at Hokona Hall
  8.     Buena Vista Road south of Las Lomas and the Scholes Hall area
  9.     Redondo Drive
  10. Campus Drive
  11. UNM Police Station

Willie West, acting associate director of PPD’s Environmental Services, explained that these specific areas of campus enable emergency crews to navigate on campus should there be any emergency response needed. These areas provide patient care, emergency vehicle access on roadways, and primary traffic routes. After these critical areas are cleared, work on the interior campus sidewalks, building entrances and secondary streets will begin.

PPD has a fleet of plow trucks, spreaders, and other smaller vehicles that are equipped to remove snow quickly and apply de-icing materials such as sand, road salt and ice melt to sidewalks and roadways. PPD stores enough of this material to respond to four average-sized snow events on campus, due to limitations of storage space. 

“It is our goal to make all areas of UNM safe and accessible for motorists and pedestrians as quickly as possible after a snowfall,” says West. “Please be patient and observant of the staff performing snow and ice removal operations, and allow them to complete the process quickly, efficiently and safely.”

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