Downtown Rochester’s heated 1st Avenue gets to work

Heated Street on 1st Ave.
Heated Street on 1st Ave.(KTTC)
Published: Dec. 16, 2022 at 4:39 PM CST
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ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) – As our temperatures continue to drop, one street in Rochester is keeping warm.

The road and sidewalk in front of Peace Plaza between 1st Ave. and 2nd St. has its own snow melting system.

It’s been up and running for nearly a year. The project cost the city $1.6 million.

It was part of the Heart of the City Project on Peace Plaza.

While the system runs year-round, it remains dormant in the summer and gets to work once that snow falls in the colder months.

You may notice some snow piles around the trees on the sidewalk. That’s because the snow melt system doesn’t run under the tree so that the trees can go dormant in the winter.

“People seem to love it. It really is an amenity, provides additional safety, reduces slippage, reduces the amount of salt needed which is better for the environment. It also provides less wear and tear on our pavers. For patients and their needs, it really gives them another element of feeling safer, more footing, all the patients, visitors, everyone,” Rochester strategic initiatives director Josh Johnson said.

The city is also including snow melt under the discovery walk along 2nd Ave. SW. That project should be done fall of next year.