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Do you need to shovel your Boston sidewalk?

This map has the answer


It’s one of the more inescapable questions in the Boston area in wintertime: Do I have to shovel the sidewalk in front of my house, townhouse, rental property, commercial business, etc.?

The short answer is yes—at least in most of the region.

The rules vary from municipality to municipality, however. For instance, in Boston proper, a property owner has until three hours after snowfall or precipitation stops or three hours after sunrise if it snows overnight. In Newton, it’s until 30 hours (!) after precipitation stops, 24 hours for business owners.

In Cambridge, it’s a bit detailed: 12 hours after snowfall or precipitation stops if it stops during the day, before 1 p.m. if it stops overnight; for ice removal, it’s six hours after snowfall or precipitation stops.

And, of course, if a municipality does require sidewalk-shoveling, then said municipality usually slaps fines on violators.

Get a town-by-town, city-by-city breakdown from this handy state website.