Portland Sidewalk Program

Portland City Code states that property owners must keep sidewalks in good repair so that they are free of tripping hazards and other safety hazards for pedestrians and people in wheelchairs. 

Sidewalk maintenance standards identify three general types of sidewalk hazards. A trip hazard is when there is a vertical step separation equal to or greater than half an inch. A spalling sidewalk occurs when the sidewalk surface is chipped or deteriorated to a depth equal to or greater than half an inch. The third hazard is when openings or holes in the sidewalk equal or exceed half an inch.

Sidewalks may be assessed by Transportation Bureau inspectors in a proactive manner or in response to a complaint of a hazardous condition and notify the property owner of needed repairs. In the event timely repairs are not made within 60 days by the property owner, the Transportation Bureau will hire a private contractor to make the repairs and bill the property owner for the costs.

In other cases, property owners may want to voluntarily repair their sidewalk. To do so, a property owner (or their contractor) needs to apply for a permit before beginning voluntary demolition or repair work. A Minor Improvement Permit (MIP) inspector is available for consultations before getting a permit by calling 503.823.7002 x1. 

MIPs can answer questions such as how extensive of a repair might be required, what areas of sidewalk don’t meet city maintenance standards and how to solve unique problems or address specific conflicts with existing structure.

Repair applications are available at bit.ly/SidwalkRepairPermit or by calling 503.823.1711. Fees are based on the square footage of the sidewalk, driveway and lineal feet of curb to be repaired, with a $60 minimum and $500 maximum. 

Transportation Bureau staff review all new permits daily and will contact applicants if more information or changes are needed. Once payment approval has been verified and permits have been approved, usually the second business day following the day of submission, an email will be sent with instructions for picking up the permit. 

All repairs and construction require passing a final inspection before the permitted work is considered complete. In some cases, the inspector may require additional inspections.

People who are concerned about a hazardous sidewalk can report it most efficiently online with an accompanying photo at bit.ly/ReportSidewalkHazard. Alternatively, a report may be filed by calling 503.823.1711.

Portland Sidewalk Program

1 thought on “<strong>Portland Sidewalk Program</strong>”

  1. It amazes me that the city continues to plant trees between the sidewalks and the curbs. They grow to large trees and as the grow they raise/fracture the sidewalks and then the city wants us to fix them. What is wrong with this picture??????

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