Cars may be towed as street cleaning begins in City of Ithaca

The City of Ithaca is beginning its annual schedule of street cleaning on Monday, April 1, and asks residents to move their cars when their street is scheduled. Signs will go up 24 hours ahead of a street closing, and residents can be notified via Tompkins SIREN.

Related: New community alert system combines Tompkins, Ithaca, Cornell, and more

City crews will post “no parking” signs 24 hours ahead of time throughout the next few weeks, so keep an eye on where your car is parked and be prepared to move it. Notifications are also available from the Tompkins SIREN system available in Ithaca and Tompkins County, which can text or call or email when there’s an update.

Cars may be towed as city crews close streets for cleaning. 14850 file photo.

As cleaning crews start with lower South Hill and lower Collegetown neighborhoods on Monday, the following streets will be cleaned on April 1, and there will be no parking beginning at 7am on Monday:

Hudson Street from Coddington Road to S. Aurora Street
South Hill Terrace from Turner Place to S. Cayuga Street
S. Cayuga Street from S. Titus Avenue to the top of the hill
Columbia Street from Turner Place to Giles Street
Giles Street from Columbia Street to Hudson Street
Osmun Place from Stewart Avenue to E. Buffalo Street
Blair Street from Cook Street to Mitchell Street
Schuyler Place from E. Buffalo Street to E. State Street
N. Quarry Street from E. Buffalo Street to E. State Street

The schedule continues with the rest of Collegetown, streets along Six Mile Creek, and other areas near the Cornell campus the first week.

“Residents are encouraged to rake their tree lawns (the area between your sidewalk and your curb) when their street has been posted for street cleaning, placing only raked materials in the curb gutter BEFORE the street cleaners come through,” the City of Ithaca says. “Any material raked into the gutter after street cleaning is performed will be removed at the property owner’s expense.”

Vehicles that aren’t removed from streets marked as closed by 7am are subject to being ticketed and towed, city officials said in a statement. “The standard fee for towing in the City of Ithaca is $200 plus sales tax. The posted signs are intended for the entire block, so please do not think you are safe by parking in between them.” Towing fees must be paid in cash at the commercial towing yards where cars are towed.

In addition to the towing fee, there is a storage fee of $50 per day, which will add up quickly for anyone who’s out of town or otherwise isn’t paying attention to their cars. In 2018, the City of Ithaca says they towed two dozen cars in the first two days of street cleaning.

If you sign up for SIREN notifications now, or if you are already registered for them, make sure you specifically check the box for “City of Ithaca – Street Cleaning Notifications!” Note that if you had a Swift911 account migrated to SIREN in 2022, but didn’t set up your SIREN profile after that, your account has been deleted.

Related: Tompkins County will purge accounts that were migrated to SIREN alert system

Streets are only open for parking again after they have been cleaned and the signs have been removed by DPW staff.

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