Snow Removal

Rapid City Public Works
Street Division
Roadway Snow Removal Hotline:  394-4152
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Please report roads that need additional snow removal to our hotline at 394-4152 or email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

For sidewalk snow removal issues or complaints, please contact the Code Enforcement Division at 355-3465.

The winter season often presents hazardous driving conditions and circumstances which are inconvenient and frustrating for everyone - home owners, motorists, pedestrians, emergency services and snow fighters alike.

While the motoring public begins preparing for winter conditions in late fall, the street division begins preparations at the end of the previous winter. All policies, plans, equipment and materials are reviewed, refined, repaired or replaced in an effort to improve service in the next winter season. Winter service and maintenance of city streets may include chemical treatment, snow plowing, snow removal or any combination of these services.

It is the goal of the Rapid City Street Division to provide the safest driving surfaces possible, using the resources that are available.

There are about 350 miles of multiple lane streets in Rapid City, plus 40 miles of alleys. This adds up to approximately 1,500 lane miles. Because it is impossible to immediately service the entire street system, certain priorities have been established. However, emergencies can modify priorities.

  • Brush up on your winter driving skill
  • Keep your vehicles in top condition
  • Allow more time for travel during winter months
  • Don't throw snow into the street when clearing your driveway
  • When winter storms are approaching, park vehicles off the street until plowing operations are completed

Snow Policy

Goal: To provide the motorist with the safest driving surface possible, in an efficient and economical manner, with the resources available.

Sanding and Chemical Treatment of streets:

Initial service of streets during a snow/ice incident will be applications of sand, salt, liquid deicer or a combination of these products. Streets will be treated in the following order of priority:

  • All arterial and emergency routes along with those streets having steep grades or other hazardous geometry and major intersections.
  • Collector and sub-collector streets and school routes
  • Residential streets.

To reduce the amount of material used, flat level streets are not treated unless a special situation should exist. Other accepted chemicals may be used for maximum effectiveness.

Plowing Policy:

Snow plowing incidents will be divided into three levels of service. The service level will be determined by the Director of Public Works or his designee.

  • LEVEL A RESPONSE: (approximately 2-4" snow depth) 
    • This level of service will include the plowing of all arterial streets, emergency routes, streets with steep grades and other hazardous geometry, collector streets and major intersections. May include downtown snow removal.
  • LEVEL B RESPONSE: (approximately 4-6" snow depth)
    • Sub-collector streets and some high traffic residential streets will be plowed in addition to those streets covered in "Level A Response". Included in this service will be downtown snow removal. Some work may be contracted with the private sector.
  • LEVEL C RESPONSE: (greater than 6" snow depth)
    • All remaining Rapid City Streets. Contractors will be hired so this service may be completed in the shortest period of time possible.


Driveway entrances will not be opened by City crews under routine plowing operations. Exceptions can be made to this policy in special situations as may be determined by the Director of Public Works or his designee.

Clearing of the snow from sidewalks located at either curb side or property line, shall be the responsibility of the property owner as per ordinance 12.12.090 of the Rapid City Municipal Code. City policy will be to remove the snow from sidewalks on public bridges and from those curb side sidewalks located on streets with four or more traffic lanes, on a predominantly residential street and on a school pedestrian route. This work will be done only after street plowing operations have been completed.  

It shall be the practice of the City to plow the street from curb to curb in order to maintain surface drainage. Should mail delivery be halted at a residence because a windrow of snow is blocking the mail box, the City will remove enough snow for mail service to resume if plowing was improperly done.

Snow Removal:

As per Chapter 10.48 of the Rapid City Municipal Code, snow removal operations will be performed in the downtown core area, other posted areas, and those areas deemed necessary by the Director of Public Works or his designee. This work will be performed primarily during night time hours to minimize traffic interference.

When a "Weather Condition 3" (heavy intense storm of prolonged duration) is declared by the Emergency Management Office, the Mayor or his designee may declare a Snow Emergency. In this case all available personnel will be called to duty.

Snow Plow Route Map

pdf Snow Exchange Map (883 KB)

pdf Downtown Snow Removal Map (104 KB)

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