Snowbanks devour Minneapolis parking spaces

Growing snowbanks have forced Minneapolis to restrict parking on some of its narrower streets.

"The snow that fell during November and December is still here," said Mike Kennedy, the city's director of transportation maintenance and repair. "We can't stack it higher. It doesn't melt."

Public Works crews will determine which streets need the restrictions and post signs to inform drivers.

In some cases, parking will be limited to only one side of the street until enough snow melts to widen the right of way.

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The city will temporarily ban parking on both sides of some other streets and use plows to push back the snowbanks.

The restrictions will effect about 5 percent of city streets, making them far less severe than those put in place during the "Domebuster" winter of 2010-2011.

"But at some point, if we have another snow emergency, another 5- to 6-inch snowstorm, we may find that the majority of the streets are restricted, that we can't do it on this limited effort basis," Kennedy said.

If that happens, Minneapolis would implement winter parking rules citywide -- banning parking on one side of many residential streets.

St. Paul has no plans for winter parking restrictions, according to Mayor Chris Coleman's office.