Sure it’s unseasonably warm today, but few in Midtown and Atlanta will forget what they woke up to two years ago today.
Can you say Snowpocalypse?
Thursday’s predicted low temperature of 56 degrees is actually higher than the average temperature for this date and in the coming days temps are expected to rise into the 70s.
But it was a far different, and much chillier story two years ago when snow began falling during the evening hours of Sunday, Jan. 9, 2011. By the time Monday morning rolled around, the metro area was a winter wonderland.
Two years ago today, temperatures didn’t climb above freezing as people were skiing down Peachtree, "couch surfing" in Piedmont Park and reveling in the fun of a rare winter snowstorm in the south.
But more snow and freezing rain came on Jan. 10 leading to much of the metro area being frozen out of work, school, and just about everything else for almost a full week. In essence, the city came to a freezing screeching halt.
Icy road conditions were very hazardous and drivers were advised to stay off the streets. Many of the city’s major roads such Peachtree Street, Piedmont Avenue, Ponce de Leon Avenue and Northside Drive were a sheet of ice for days as the remnants of the storm were slow to thaw.
Those roads are state routes, which meant it was the Georgia Department of Transportation’s responsibility to clear them. But GDOT focused its efforts on clearing the highways, and streets in the city were largely ignored until the City of Atlanta jumped in mid-week.
Mayor Reed later announced that the city would be more proactive in street clearing during future storms and not wait on GDOT. But the damage was done as being ice-in grew on residents' nerves and frustrations mounted as the week continued.
But by the weekend, life was beginning to return to normal and Atlanta Public Schools finally returned to the classroom on Jan. 18, 2011. But even after all the ice melted, garbage cans were overflowing on several side streets in Midtown as city solid waste collections were temporarily suspended because of the storm.
All in all, it was one "Snowmageddon" of a storm that residents won’t soon forget.
What are your Snowpocalypse memories in Midtown?