In the July newsletter we reported on the City’s Sidewalk Cost Sharing Program.  Interested neighbors had questions, so we asked Lincoln Avant, Senior Management Analyst with the Transportation Capital Improvements Department (also a neighbor and KWA member), for additional information. 

KWA:  The brochure states the cost as $60 per liner foot; however, a neighbor’s quote for her sidewalk was $38 per linear foot.  Lower cost is better of course, but why the difference?

Lincoln:  The original cost is what is calculated as “worst case scenario” so customers can understand the potential prices associated with a project.  The $60 per linear foot is a baseline price provided that includes anticipated costs such as minor retaining wall work, curb work where the street also needs to be repaired at the curb line, traffic control for average road conditions, and some landscaping.  Once our team investigates, we eliminate any overhead that each unique project does not need or require, as just described.  This can bring the cost down significantly in a positive way for the resident.  $60.00 per linear foot was an overall average of what the City is trending in a given period for sidewalk contracts that are all-inclusive as mentioned, but each request and the work involved is unique. 

KWA:  So based on site specific conditions, this neighbor’s sidewalk repair could cost less than $60, or possibly even more than $60 per linear feet?

Lincoln:  Yes.

KWA:  My handicap corner is in bad shape, but it is not in the quote for replacement.  Do you know why?

Lincoln:  The City covers ADA ramp corners as part of the project, and the property owner will not be held responsible for payment on repairs.  The contractor will add the ADA ramps at no expense to the property owner. 

KWA:  I don’t have a sidewalk on my side property line.  Why won’t the City put one in?

Lincoln:  This program is to address sidewalk repair, not gaps.  The City does not have a mechanism currently in place that addresses sidewalk repairs, and that is the intent of this pilot.

KWA:  When does the program end?

Lincoln:  September 30, 2016.  It’s actually going through the budget review process right now, which will determine if it’s going to be renewed for fiscal year 2017 [which starts October 1, 2016].  I cannot say now whether it will be renewed next year or not.
KWA Sidewalk Chair Fred Pfieffer stated that the KWA sidewalk grant would cover the neighbor’s half of the cost up to $25 per linear foot, but would not exceed the total amount the neighbor owed to replace the sidewalk.  For instance: 

Example 1:  987 Alamo Street has a 75 foot sidewalk.  The City inspector states it will cost $42 per linear foot to replace, or $3,150 (75 x $42).  Half of that is $1,575, which the property owner owes the City.  But wait!  The KWA sidewalk grant pays  up to $25 linear foot.  So, 75 x $25 = $1,875, which exceeds the owner’s actual cost.  In this case, the KWA sidewalk grant would pay out the $1,575 to reimburse the property owner for their share of the cost. 

Example 2:  654 City Street has a 75 foot sidewalk.  The City inspector states it will cost $65 per linear foot to replace, or $4,875 (75 x $65).  Half of that is $2,437.  KWA would pay $1,875 ($25 x 75) and the property owner would pay a total of $562 out of pocket ($2,437 - $1,875 = $562).

 Estimates are free and there is no obligation to repair your sidewalk, but this is currently a limited time offer!  Call 311 today and ask for an inspection to get the actual cost for your sidewalk repair. 

- Cherise Bell