What Is The Sidewalk Program?
The City of Canal Winchester Public Service Department inspects sidewalks each year in order to protect the health, safety, and well-being of residents through our annual sidewalk program. Safe pedestrian-friendly neighborhoods are vital to our residents and properly maintained sidewalks contribute to the livability and image of our city. Per section 729.01 of the Ohio Revised Code, it is the responsibility of the abutting property owners to maintain sidewalks along their property. If the City identifies a sidewalk in need of repair, the property owner will receive notification of the needed repairs and an estimated cost. The property owner will have a choice to correct the deficient sidewalk on their own or to take advantage of participating in the City's annual Street Maintenance Program. Opting into the City program allows the property owner to benefit from cost savings associated with prices derived from large quantities and competitive bidding. Additionally, the City handles the coordination, scheduling and quality control related to the work.
What Does It Cost?
In order to assist property owners with compliance to the sidewalk code, the Canal Winchester City Council has established a sidewalk cost sharing program whereby the City will pay up to 50% of the reasonable and customary costs of the sidewalk repairs. The City may increase its portion for those that qualify for further financial assistance.
How Does The City Select Sidewalks For Repair?
The City has specific criteria it follows when inspecting sidewalks. Inspectors look for cracked and uneven walks, excessive deterioration, excessive slopes and trip hazards. The inspection criteria can be found on the inspection form and under chapter 905.07 of the Canal Winchester Codified Ordinances. See a copy of the Inspection Form (PDF).
How Do I Choose To Opt-In To The Program?
Do nothing upon receipt of the deficient sidewalk notice. Your walk will be automatically added to our annual Street Maintenance Program and the City's contractor will complete the work. The work typically takes place in mid to late spring. Upon completion of the Street Program, an invoice will be sent to you for your portion of the sidewalk cost. This invoice may be paid within 30 days from receipt of the invoice or you may choose that the cost, plus 1%, to be assessed to your property taxes over a three year period.
How Do I Choose To Opt-Out Of The Program?
If you wish to not have your walk repairs completed through the program, you may opt-out by notifying the City within 30 days of receipt of the deficiency notice. An Opt-Out form is included with the notice. Opting out does not remove the requirement that the sidewalk needs to be improved, it only means that you do not wish to have the improvements made by the City's contractor. The work will still need to be performed either by yourself or a contractor that you select and coordinate. Those that choose to opt-out may still be eligible for reimbursement of up to 50% of the sidewalk replacement cost. Upon receipt of the opt-out notice, the City will provide the resident with the forms necessary for applying for this grant and instructions for the grant process.
What About Street Trees?
When trees are adjacent to the sidewalk to be replaced, the condition is reviewed by the Urban Forester who determines the degree of impact to the tree. If trees within the public Right of Way are damaged or lost as a result of the construction, the property owner may apply to the City for priority under the City sponsored tree replacement program.