FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Indiana's NewsCenter) - It may be summer in the city, but something as simple as taking a stroll in your neighborhood can be a safety concern if you live in a Fort Wayne subdivision without sidewalks.
Fort Wayne requires that all new subdivisions have sidewalks on both sides of the street, but there are many neighborhoods with sidewalks on just one side or none at all.
Most of those additions are in annexed parts of the city, because the county has different infrastructure requirements.
Not having sidewalks can be dangerous for kids on bikes or people out walking their pets, but the city has a cost-sharing policy that could provide the needed upgrades.
A home owners association or group of residents can petition the Board of Public Works by collecting signatures from 51% of affected property owners.
City engineers will then provide a cost estimate and a public hearing will be held. If funds are available, property owners pay 60% of the sidewalk's cost and the city pays 40%, including engineering, labor, materials, removal, excavation, restoration, inspections, etc.
Mario Travino, Manager of Transportation and Engineering Services, says, "Even after we get the percentages and we go to a public hearing, often the costs deter or other conditions may deter those who signed the petition."
If 51% of residents sign a remonstrance petition within 10 days of the public hearing, the project is canceled and can't be brought before the board again for at least six months.
However, the process doesn't cost property owners anything unless the project actually goes through. For more information, contact your local city council representative or the Board of Public Works.
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