In order to improve the condition of sidewalks and curbs, the City of Columbus is expanding its sidewalk repair program to increase the cost-share amount for sidewalk repairs and to extend the program to include curb repairs.
The Shared Cost Sidewalk and Curb Program is an incentive program to assist property owners with addressing overdue repairs to sidewalks and curbs in order to increase the safety and appearances of their homes and neighborhoods. The expansion of the program is part of a comprehensive effort of Mayor Kristen Brown’s administration to improve the City’s critical infrastructure.
The City of Columbus is responsible for repairs to city streets, alleys and curb ramps for disabled access. According to decades-old municipal code, property owners are responsible for repairs to sidewalk and curbs on their property.
The City is offering reimbursements of $4 per square foot for approved sidewalk improvement projects, which effectively doubles the amount previously available. The program’s new curb-repair component provides reimbursements of $25 per linear foot for approved curb projects. Depending on the size of the repair project and the contractor employed by the resident, this reimbursement could be as much as half the cost of repairs.
“Along with our streets, sidewalks and curbs are part of our city’s critical infrastructure. It’s imperative they are maintained to be safe for pedestrians and to keep up the appearances of our neighborhoods,” Mayor Kristen Brown said. “Residents across the city can take advantage of this program and the City will share the cost of sidewalk and curb repairs, offering outstanding value for homeowners.”
To participate in the cost-share program, residents must submit an application to the City Engineer’s office. Application forms are available at the City Engineer’s office at City Hall and on the City’s website at http://www.columbus.in.gov/engineering/sidewalks/. The City will review the application and provide further instructions.
There is no application deadline for the Shared Cost Sidewalk and Curb program. However, the program will be administered on a first-come, first-serve basis and is subject to annual funding availability. Therefore, residents are encouraged to apply early. Residents are responsible for hiring contractors and paying for the entire scope of the work. The City will provide reimbursements upon completion of the project.
The program is for residential properties only. Not for profit organizations may also qualify.
The City also annually invests Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds to pay for 100% of the cost of sidewalk repairs in low to moderate-income neighborhoods.. In the past five years, nearly $350,000 of CDBG funds have been used to improve more than 18,000 linear feet of sidewalks and 42 curb ramps.
Beginning next spring, the City will increase the amount of CDBG funds it contributes to these infrastructure repairs by 70% to begin improving curbs, in addition to sidewalks, in low to moderate-income neighborhoods. The City has budgeted $145,254 for sidewalk and curb improvements out of $255,254 in anticipated CDBG revenues.