PORTLAND — The city of Portland decided to enforce tonight’s parking ban four hours earlier than usual.

Nicole Clegg, spokeswoman for the city, said a citywide parking ban will go into effect at 6 p.m. instead of 10 p.m.

The ban allows the city’s public works crews to remove snow from streets and sidewalks. Roads and pathways are beginning to get cramped due to the amount of snow that has fallen recently.

Vehicles left on the street during the ban will be towed at the owner’s expense. The ban will remain in effect through 6 a.m. Thursday.

Clegg said the city decided to move the ban up because of the number of downtown businesses that were closed today and because of the storm’s severity.