Winter bikers hope for clear commuter paths 7 days a week

MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) -- Winter bikers could benefit from a potential budget amendment, which would allow the City of Madison to clear snow off main commuter paths every day of the week.

Tom Wilson rides his bike in every season, including winter.

Tom Wilson got rid of his car years ago. He chooses to ride his bike everywhere, in every season. With the right winter gear, Wilson said the winters (in non-extreme conditions) are no problem.

But snow is often a concern.

Currently, the City of Madison’s Engineering Division oversees snow removal of the main commuter paths-- only on the weekdays.

“By the time that Monday comes around, the snow that fell on Friday is now ice,” Wilson said. “And it’s almost impossible for crews to get off, even if they try to.”

If passed, the $65,000 budget amendment would allow the City to clear the commuter paths on weekends and holidays within 12 hours of the snow falling, according to a city spokesperson. The new snow-clearing schedule would go into effect January 1, 2020.

Wilson added that this amendment would help more people than winter bikers.

“The bike paths aren’t just used by bikes,” he said. “They’re actually called multi-use paths, so particularly around campus and downtown, lots of people are walking, running, walking their dogs… doing all kinds of things.”

Madison’s Common Council is set to consider the budget amendment Nov. 12-14.