Street sweeping signs to go up today

The Minneapolis Public Works Department will begin posting “no parking” signs today throughout the southeast metro area for biannual street sweeping.

Beginning Thursday, crews will be sweeping away debris, sand and dirt street by street during the next four weeks. Signs will be posted 24 hours before each street is swept and will be removed after the cleaning.

Garret Preussner, Minneapolis street maintenance and repair foreman, said cars not moved from streets with “no parking” signs will be towed at the owners’ expense.

“The majority of (those towed) are students, and we prefer not to tow them,” Preussner said.

“We don’t tow for a profit,” he said, adding that the cost of towing exceeds $150.

Preussner said not heeding the signs’ directions also slows down the work of sweeping crews, who have to return to uncleared streets after cars have been towed.

“It would make our jobs so much easier if we could fly down the streets,” he said. “We spend about one minute going around each car and Ö if you go around 100 cars, that’s an hour and a half.”

Preussner said the city tows approximately 100 cars each day during the street sweeping weeks, adding that the red and white signs restricting parking are often overlooked.

“The signs just don’t jump out at you,” he said. “Maybe they should make them blaze orange or green. Just looking for the signs is really the safest bet.”