Evanston declares snow emergency, Northwestern to remain open Monday


Nathan Richards/Daily Senior Staffer

Students trudge past The Arch as snow blows by Sunday afternoon. The National Weather Service predicted 10 to 16 inches of snow for Sunday evening.

Olivia Exstrum and Tori Latham

Evanston has declared a snow emergency for Monday and Tuesday after the National Weather Service declared a blizzard warning for the Chicago area until Sunday at midnight.

The National Weather Service predicted that up to 18 total inches of snow could accumulate during the course of the blizzard. Northwestern classes will be held as usual Monday, the University announced Sunday night. All Evanston schools will be closed Monday.

NU Shuttles and SafeRide services will operate “as close as possible” to normal schedules, and all NU facilities and offices will be open during regular hours. SafeRide did not operate Sunday. University Library and Norris University Center closed early at 6 p.m.

The city has been trying to reduce travel as much as possible and make sure residents know the importance of staying indoors, city manager Wally Bobkiewicz said.

“It seems like people are really staying off the street today, which is great,” he said. “I definitely think the Super Bowl has helped with that.”

Officials issued an overnight parking ban Sunday and Monday due to intense winter weather conditions.The city reminded residents to pay attention to parking signs and abide by the instructions so that the city can properly remove snow. Emergency sirens will sound at 8:15 p.m. Monday night to signal to Evanston citizens to move their vehicles.

To reduce the number of cars on the street, the city has made parking free at three downtown Evanston garages. The 1800 Maple Self Park, Church St. Self Park and Sherman Plaza Self Park will remain open and free of charge until 11:59 p.m. on Tuesday.

“On social media I’ve seen a lot of people anxious about keeping the parking garages open,” Bobkiewicz said. “That’s something we’re happy to do.”

On Monday, residents have to park on the odd-numbered side of streets between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. On Tuesday, they have to park on the even-numbered side. Emergency sirens will go off at 7:15 a.m. and 12:15 p.m. both days.

“Residents and students are often taken back by the siren, and we’ve proposed getting rid of it,” Bobkiewicz said. “But the community feels very strongly about it. When we proposed that, we got a resounding no.”

Bobkiewicz said officials have not had to take too many special considerations this year for the inclement weather.

“Our snow plans go back many, many years,” he said. “These practices have been in place for a long time.”

Gary Wojtowicz, director of NU Facilities Management operations, said in an email to The Daily that campus drives, building entrances, surface lots and pedestrian paths on both the Evanston and Chicago campuses will be accessible and cleared of snow by Monday morning.

“The forecasts are saying that it should let up overnight and for the next week we shouldn’t have any more measurable snow,” Bobkiewicz said.

This post was updated Sunday at 10:55 p.m.

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