Storm damage recovery

TRN-10.17 - Sidewalk and Driveway Permits (including Asphalt Approaches)

Administrative Rules Adopted by Bureaus Pursuant to Rule Making Authority (ARB)
Policy number
SIDEWALK AND DRIVEWAY PERMITS (including Asphalt Approaches)
Administrative Rule Adopted by Bureau of Transportation Engineering & Development Pursuant to Rule-Making Authority

I. Definition

Portland’s Bureau of Transportation, issues permits for sidewalks, driveways, carriage walks, tree wells, and infill for furnishing and building zones within the public right-of-way. City Code reference for these permits is Title 17.24. Please reference this code section for details beyond those required for permit issuance. Permits are generated from the sidewalk posting program, the building plan review process, and through citizen requests.

II. Administrative Rule

A. Sidewalk & Driveway Posting

1. To apply for a permit, the contractor or property owner shall provide the posting number as shown on the posting affidavit and indicate if there is any additional non-posted work to be performed. Work other than shown on the affidavit drawing requires a separate permit from SSM.

2. SSM contacts the Sidewalk Posting Section at the Bureau of Maintenance to coordinate permitted activities. Sidewalk Posting provides the required date (as specified on the Posted Notice) that work shall be completed by.

B. Sidewalk & Driveway Permits through Building Plan Review

Rules apply as per Bureau of Development Services Requirements and as per Title and Chapter 17.28 of City Code.

C. Sidewalk & Driveway Permits through Citizen Requests

1. If the requested permit is for a new driveway, the applicant shall submit a drawing indicating the proposed and existing driveway, curb and sidewalk area. The drawing must show the dimensions from property line, a north arrow, the street names and any structures on site.

2. The applicant submits the driveway plan to planning & zoning in the Development Services Center for approval.

3. Upon approval from planning & zoning, the applicant submits the driveway plan to SSM for permit issuance.

4. For commercial property and residential driveways within 25' on a corner lot, Bureau of Transportation System Management shall review & approve the plan.

5. Upon receipt of all approvals and requirements, SSM may issue a permit.

6. If the request is to repair an existing driveway or sidewalk, there is no requirement to go through zoning/planning. Otherwise, all other rules as listed above apply.

Please note that all driveway and sidewalk construction shall meet the requirements as shown in The Standard Construction Specifications book. In addition:

ο When replacing driveway and sidewalks, SSM requires that replacement shall be from score to score or joint to joint. Angle cuts or partial section replacements may not be approved.

ο When replacing monolithic sidewalk and curb, the curb may be retained only if the sidewalk is sawcut, a planter strip is added and the curb is in good condition. If the sidewalk is being replaced adjacent to the curb, the curb shall be replaced in a monolithic pour.

D. D/W Access onto unimproved R-O-W

When requesting access is to a public R-O-W that is not paved or graveled, the applicant will be directed to Development Review for determination of type of driveway construction required.

E. Carriage Walk

A carriage walk is a concrete sidewalk from the curb to the public sidewalk the width of which is the same width as the walkway from the public sidewalk to the house. The permit process is as follows:

1. The applicant must draw up a footprint indicating the proposed and existing curb and sidewalk area. The drawing must show the dimensions from property line, North Arrow, and street names.

F. Furnishing Zone

City policy calls for landscaping all sidewalk furnishing zones between the curb and pedestrian through zone, and not to allow placement of paving material in these strips. This policy reflects City planning goals for maintaining the aesthetic qualities that landscaped furnishing zones provide in any area, and for pedestrian safety. Furnishing zones also mitigate storm water runoff from the sidewalk, reducing the amount storm water within the City’s system.

Exceptions to this policy will be reviewed on a case by case basis addressing the following criteria.

ο The area is adjacent to a school and the area is used for bus loading.

ο The area is within a bus stop zone established by a public agency.

ο Width of the furnishing zone is less than 2' in an R zone.

ο Within any D zone overlay, design review must be consulted.

ο Other cases as deemed necessary by the City Engineer.

ο Sand set pavers may be placed with in the furnishing zone without a permit in any zone if no more than 50% of the area of the furnishing zone is hardscape.

All requests for permits to infill furnishing zones may be granted only if:

1. Field inspection indicates that infill will not be in conflict with other areas of the block.

2. For Commercial sidewalk furnishing zone, hardscape is the approved option for furnishing zone on the frontage with Tree Wells, under the guidelines of Section G. Tree Wells below, and must use materials approved under number 4 of this section below. When a stormwater facility is within the furnishing zone and there is adjacent on-street parking, a 3 foot wide (not including curb) hard surface stepout consisting of the above approved materials shall be provided for pedestrian egress and ingress of parked vehicle between the curb and the stormwater facility.

3. For Residential sidewalk furnishing zones, green (grass) or softscape with street trees is the approved option on these frontages.

For Residential Projects, up to 50% of the surface area may be hardscaped instead of green (grass) or softscape with street trees using materials approved under number 4 of this section below.

4. Materials used in the furnishing zone may be either Portland cement concrete, bricks, sand set pavers, or softscape depending on whether the location is commercial or residential.

All hard surfacings shall match the color of the sidewalk unless granted an exception by the Design Commission.

Permits for Infill of Furnishing zones are processed as follows:

The applicant shall submit a drawing showing the proposed and existing curb and sidewalk area. The drawing shall show the dimensions from property line, North Arrow, street names, trees, poles, utilities, and signs.

G. Tree Wells

The tree well program is administered by the City Forester. The City Forester approves the type of tree to be planted and its location within the public right-of-way. Tree well width shall be the width of the furnishing zone and the length as indicated in the following table (dimensions are in feet):

Sidewalk through zone widthTree well length

All public sidewalks shall have a minimum clear area for pedestrian passage of 5 feet. On all arterial and commercial streets, and in the Central City Business District, a minimum of 6 feet of unobstructed sidewalk area shall be maintained. The total clear pedestrian passage shall not include the width of the adjacent curb.

No reduction in unobstructed sidewalk area is allowed except in cases where the abutting property owner has granted a pedestrian easement abutting the public right-of-way and constructs a sidewalk to City standards which combined with the public sidewalk meets the required minimum clear widths.

The permit process is as follows:

1. The applicant must draw up a footprint indicating the proposed and existing curb and sidewalk area. The drawing must show the dimensions from property line, North Arrow, and street names.

H. Friends of Trees

For each tree requiring cutting a tree well in the sidewalk area, Friends of Trees shall submit an application with the following items:

ο Site plan with dimensions

ο Property owner signature approving placement of the tree(s)

ο City Forester recommendations

Street Systems Management reviews the application for completeness and verifies that the tree well is compatible with the right of way configuration. Friends of Trees will be notified of incomplete applications. The application will be placed on hold pending the receipt of the required information. Applications for sites that cannot be permitted will be so noted and returned to Friends of Trees.

Street Systems Management inspector will conduct a field visit for each application that is complete and at a site that can be permitted.

With the Inspectors approval, Street Systems Management will issue the permit. One permit will be issued for each property with the Friends of Trees as the representative.

Fees for tree wells are:

$15.00 per tree well when tree wells are random and not in a district (minimum permit fee does not apply).

$30.00 per block face when block faces are in a district and two or more tree wells will be placed on each block face.

A block face is defined as one side of a block, on one side of the street. A typical square block has four block faces. A district is defined as two or more block faces without gaps.

Amended by Assistant Director of Portland Bureau of Transportation March 1, 2016.
Filed for Inclusion in PPD December 19, 2003.

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