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Department of Planning & Development
Department of Planning & Development

Residential Sidewalk Reconstruction – General Guidelines

This quick reference outlines the key provisions of Detail Specifications 20A provided with your permit.  Be sure to read Detail Specifications 20A thoroughly before starting, because the sidewalk work must meet these requirements. 

A path of travel for all pedestrians (especially blind and disabled) must be maintained at all times.  See Pedestrian Access Requirements (PDF149.60KB) for more information or contact a Public Works Inspector. 


1.  Remove and reconstruct full width of sidewalk

  • Existing sidewalk shall be saw cut to a minimum depth of 1” along the nearest scoreline to make edges of remaining concrete as neat and even as possible (2004.3A).

  • Use lampblack to color the concrete. One and a half pounds per cubic yard is the standard proportion (2002.5A).

  • Control joints and score lines should match the pattern of the adjacent sidewalk (2003.6A) 

  • Brush-finish the concrete (2004.5A).

  • The maximum cross slope of new sidewalk is ¼” per lineal foot (2003.1A).  The minimum cross slope is 1/8” per lineal foot.


2.  Excavate adequately

  • 6” for sidewalks and 8” for driveways (see 2003.1A, and 2003.3A).

  • Key a section about 2” under the existing sidewalk to lock section in place (2004.2A)


3.  Place a level 2” layer of base material (sand or rock) over the excavated area and compact adequately. Wet down prior to placing new concrete (2004.3A).  Do not place rebar in sidewalk or driveway approach.  Concrete shall not be placed until forms have been inspected and approved by the Engineering Inspector. Instructions for scheduling an inspection are on the Engineering Permit.

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