Sunday, January 03, 2010

DCR Chain Gang Shoveling at Cleveland Circle

A few years back the Metropolitan District Commission did a lousy job -- basically no job whatsoever -- in shoveling snow on the sidewalks on Chestnut Hill Avenue, Beacon Street, and Commonwealth near to the Reilly Memorial Rink and other property (Chestnut Hill Reservoir) it owned at Cleveland Circle. They wouldn't even bother clearing the leaves from the sidewalks in late Fall, resulting in a trampled down mess of wet leaves that would then get trampled down with unshoveled snow into an undulating, slippery mess for pedestrians.

When the MDC disappeared and morphed into the Department of Conservation and Recreation, not much changed.

But lately, I have seen those streets shoveled more often and in a timely fashion. But why? Is the DCR all of a sudden doing a phenomenal job at shoveling sidewalks, now that they no longer are in charge of plowing the parkways in town?

Sunday night I learned the secret to their recent sidewalk shoveling success: the DCR brought in a chain gang from the Department of Corrections.

Well, not exactly a chain gang. Nobody was shackled hand and foot to each other. But they were wearing orange jumpsuits with big, black letters "DOC" on the back, and there were two vehicles -- one from DCR with equipment, the other a van from DOC for the passengers -- slowly following the shoveling men as they worked their way around the ice rink and reservoir.

Unfortunately, I didn't have a camera with me to, um, "capture" the guys for posterity. So I had to settle for a stock photo from Creative Commons.

Sounds to me like a good solution to address something that used to be a big problem.

Image of guantanamo jumpsuit orange cropped from an image by gierszewski, used through a Creative Commons license.

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