BOSTON (WHDH) - Boston Mayor Michelle Wu urged city residents to stay home as a powerful nor’easter arrived in New England Saturday.

On Friday, Wu declared a citywide snow emergency ahead of the winter wallop.

“This is not our usual snowstorm. We’re used to a whole lot here in Boston, but this could be one for the record books,” Mayor Wu told 7News.”It’s not just heavy snow, it’s intense wind and cold.”

Day broke to a high tide, with the nasty nor’easter pushing the water from the Boston Harbor up over the plaza at Long Wharf. From there, it rushed in behind the Chart House and forced some cars into a slushy situation to escape the rising waves.

Over in Copley Square, the snow blew sideways onto those who were brave enough to venture out.

On Friday, MBTA officials placed barriers around the Aquarium MBTA stop, which has dealt with flooding in the past. The Boston Marriott Long Wharf and local shops have also implemented barriers to defend against rising waters.

Boston Public Works crews said most people did stay home and off the roads, giving them room to work. Boston’s Chief of Streets, Jascha Franklin-Hodge told 7NEWS they had 940 pieces of equipment out clearing streets and sidewalks — the most they’ve ever recorded for a winter storm.

“We kept the roads open for essential travel, but it’s going to take a while,” Franklin-Hodge said. “Stay off the roads and give us time to widen them. There’s still a lot of work left to do.”

He said the two big challenges of this storm were the sheer amount of snow expected by the end, plus the rapid rate of snowfall.

The City of Boston had received approximately 14.5 inches of snow as of 2 p.m.

The National Weather Service warned of considerable blowing and drifting snow, along with near white-out conditions at times.

“The most important thing is to try and stay inside and keep your family safe,” said Mayor Wu.

Visit the 7Weather page for the latest storm updates.

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