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11/15/2017 3:25 p.m. Expect traffic delays on Sunday, Nov. 19, starting at 7:30 a.m. in Kendall Square, Central Square, Riverside & Cambridgeport during the 2017 Cambridge Half Marathon (Course Time Limit: 3 hours). The event will also impact MBTA bus service along the route. The 13.1 mile race starts at CambridgeSide, heads west through MIT & Harvard to No Beacon St. bridge in Watertown, then back along the Charles River to finish line in Canal Park. More details »

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Leaf Blower Permit

License

Leaves

Cambridge has a City ordinance governing all leaf blower use in the city (Cambridge Municipal Code Section 8.16.081). This ordinance designates specific dates and times when leaf blowers may and may not be used, sets operational requirements for equipment, contractors, and large property owners in order to balance the benefits and drawbacks of leafblower use.

Notice to all Commercial Leaf Blowers 03/22/2016

2017 Leaf Blower Permit Application

2017 Approved Leaf Blower Companies


Regulations:

Leaf Blower Regulations - English (Updated 9/12/2016)

Leaf Blower Regulations - Spanish (Updated 9/12/2016)

For additional information regarding Leaf Blowers please follow the link below:

Cambridge Department of Public Works Leaf Blowing Page

Tips and FAQs

Definition of Leaf Blower:

A "leaf blower" is any portable, handheld or backpack-style power equipment, powered by fuel or electricity, and used in landscape or property maintenance for blowing, removing or redistributing leaves, dust, dirt, clippings, litter and any other debris.

What equipment is permissible?

The Ordinance seeks to address concerns about air quality and noise produced by leaf blowers. As such, leaf blowers must meet current EPA emissions standards and the sound they emit cannot exceed 65 decibels (per manufacturer’s rating).
 
Only one leaf blower may be used in parcels of 10,000 square feet or smaller. Larger parcels may only use one leaf blower within each 10,000 square foot area.

When can leaf blowers legally operate?

The following schedule has been developed in consideration of both landscaping needs and neighborhood quality of life.

Dates Permitted 
March 15 – June 15;
September 15 – December 31

Dates Prohibited 
January 1 – March 14;
June 16 – September 14;
all Sundays and Legal holidays, except for Indigenous Peoples' Day and Veterans Day

Hours of Use (during permitted dates)
Monday – Friday: 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Saturday: 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Indigenous Peoples' Day: 12 noon – 5:00 p.m.
Veteran’s Day: 1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Who does the Leafblower ordinance apply to?

This Ordinance applies to all residents, businesses, and property owners in Cambridge. However, commercial operators and large property owners should be aware of particular sections that apply only to them.

Commercial operators (any entity or organization that employs 2 or more employees, excluding municipal operators and contractors) are prohibited from use of leaf blower equipment unless they submit an operations plan, which is approved by the City Manager.

Owners of large properties may be eligible for an exemption to operate leaf blowers during summer months and on Sundays and Holidays under certain circumstances.

Last Updated: 3/23/2017 | Provide feedback on this page

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