What is an Alley Captain?
Historically, the City of Saint Paul has never plowed, salted, or sanded alleys in winter. Residents must determine how and when to plow their alleys. Many residents in Saint Paul informally work with their neighbors to hire private contractors to plow their alleys. Plowing, pushing, or shoveling snow into the streets from alleys, driveways, parking lots, or sidewalks is not allowed.
The person who coordinates the alley plowing and collects payment from the adjacent property owners is often called an "Alley Plow Captain or Alley Plowing Coordinator." Not all alleys have a designated alley captain.
Please note that city staff do not know which alleys may or may not have a designated alley captain. It is best to check with your neighbors to see how alley plowing efforts are coordinated in your area.
About Alleys in Saint Paul
Saint Paul has approximately 2,225 alleys - roughly 330 miles. Alleys were never engineered by the city and come in many different configurations, including dead-end alleys. Alleys are made with different materials throughout the city and designated as either paved, oiled, unimproved assessed (alleys with a gravel surface that Public Works maintains), or unimproved not assessed (alleys can be gravel, dirt, or ungraded that Public Works does not maintain).
Both state law and city ordinance define an alley as a "public way that does not exceed 30-feet in width."