Sidewalks play a vital role in community life. Sidewalks provide many benefits including safety, mobility and transportation. As a conduit to pedestrian movement and access, sidewalks enhance connectivity, promote walking and lead to healthier communities. Due to age-related deterioration, normal wear-and-tear, and the ever-changing Indiana weather conditions, sidewalks can become cracked, raised, or settled, making them difficult to navigate and in some instances dangerous.
The City of Columbus’ began a sidewalk program, WalkWorks, in 1991. The WalkWorks program was designed to encourage residential property owners to replace unsafe, deteriorated sidewalks and to install new sidewalks by financially assisting the homeowners with their responsibility of maintaining the public sidewalks adjacent to their property (by City Ordinance). In 2000, churches and not-for-profit properties became eligible for participation.
In 2014, the WalkWorks program was updated to also include curbs and was renamed the Shared Cost Sidewalk and Curb (SCSC) Program. SCSC reimburses four dollars per square foot of sidewalk and twenty-five dollars per linear foot for curbs. Annually, the City Council approves funding for the SCSC program. There is no application deadline; however, the number of program requests is limited by the yearly funding. If a property owner is interested in participating in the SCSC Program, they first must complete the application, which can be found here. An Engineering staff member will review the application and visit the site to inspect and measure the sidewalk and/or curb. The Applicant will receive a letter from the City indicating the approximate reimbursement amount, as well as other important program information. The Applicant must carefully follow the detailed instructions in order to be eligible for reimbursement. After the work is completed to the Applicant’s satisfaction and has been inspected and approved by an Engineering staff member, the Applicant should pay all contractors and suppliers. Upon completion and submittal of required documents, the City will issue a reimbursement check to the Applicant.