Driveway repair and reconstruction

Q.  Do I need a permit to repair my driveway?
A.  Yes.  Any work being done in the public right-of-way requires a permit.  Typically the lower 10 feet (or from the back of the sidewalk to the curb) of your driveway is within the public right-of-way.  The cost for a right-of-way permit is $50.00 and a bond must be posted for any work within the right-of-way.  It should be noted that the driveway on your property including any sidewalk through it is responsibility of the property owner.  The drive must be kept in good repair and the portion in the public right of way should be kept clear of debris and snow. 
Q.  What are the City’s requirements?
A.  The current City standard requires a concrete drive approach in the right of way – residential drives are to be 6 inches thick; commercial and industrial drives are to be 8 inches thick.  The concrete should be 4000 psi (strength), air entrained and cured upon finishing.  There are requirements and grades regarding minimum and maximum widths for residential, commercial and industrial drives.    Call the City Engineer’s office at (937) 428-4782 for additional information.

Q.  Who does the work?
A.  It is recommended that homeowners engage a contractor to do driveway work and make the contractor responsible for securing a permit and posting a bond (many local reputable contractors already have a bond posted with the City). 

Q.  What if my driveway is asphalt?
A.  If a drive is currently asphalt, it may be reconstructed or capped in asphalt however a permit is still required for any work in the right-of-way.  A permit is not necessary to apply a seal coat to an asphalt drive.

Q.  My curb is high.  Can I place a ramp over it?  
A.  Wedges or ramps are not permitted over the curb and into the street.  While a wedge or ramp may lessen the severity of the bump in and out of the drive, it blocks the water flow down the gutter thereby causing ponding water with possible ice hazards in the winter and stagnant water in the summer.  Call the City Engineer’s office (937) 428-4782 for information on lowering the curb and drive approach to reduce the severity of this bump.

Q.  What if the curb across my driveway has deteriorated?
A. If the curb across the end of your driveway has deteriorated, the City will place temporary patch material in it or you may have it repaired along with any driveway work being done.  Please be reminded that a permit is required for the work.  Permanent repairs on curbs are included as part of the City annual road repair and resurfacing program.  Call the City Engineer’s office at (937) 428-4782 for additional information on curb repair or to report a curb section that needs attention.

Public Sidewalks

Q.  What is the property owner’s responsibility?
A.  It is the responsibility of the property owner to keep public sidewalk across their frontage in good repair and clear of debris, snow, and ice.  The City is divided into 10 areas for sidewalk repair.  Each year one of the 10 areas will be targeted for repair of deteriorated sidewalk.  Additionally sidewalk repair work will typically be performed in conjunction with the annual street repair and resurfacing program. 

Q.  How can we get sidewalk installed in our neighborhood?
A.  Should a neighborhood group desire sidewalk, they may petition the City and a possible cost sharing could be worked out between the benefiting property owners and the City.  Factors such as considering if a walk provides a logical connection to existing walk and which side of the street to build the walk on are reviewed.

In past years sidewalks have been installed in conjunction with major road improvement projects such as the Clyo Road construction and South Main Street, Spring Valley Road, and Wilmington Pike widening and reconstruction projects.  In more recent years sidewalk and/ or eight foot wide ‘hiker-biker’ paths have been installed with major road improvement projects.  These include the widening and reconstruction of Alex-Bell Road and Centerville Station Road.  Additionally sidewalks have been constructed in neighborhoods around town, specifically near schools where children walk to school. 


Q.  Why doesn’t my neighborhood have streetlights?
A.  Current City practice is to provide street lighting at all major intersections and at intersections of a side street and major street (such as Ambridge and Clyo or Whipp and Red Coach). Additional streetlights have been installed at curves along major streets. Decorative street lights have been installed along Main and Franklin Streets in the Architectural Preservation District (APD) and on South Main Street and on State Route 48/ Far Hills Avenue from Whipp to Loop Road.

It should be noted that the City has a contract with DPL Energy (a division of Dayton Power and Light) for the majority of our street lights including the decorative lights in the APD. For a monthly fee, DLP Energy operates and maintains these street lights. The exception to this contract is the decorative light system on South Main and the system on State Route 48/ Far Hills. The City owns and maintains these systems.

If you notice a street light that is burned out, please call the City’s Public Works office at 428-4782 to report the outage. 

Q.  How can we get streetlights installed in our neighborhood?
A.  Should a neighborhood desire street lights, they may petition the City to have streetlights installed. An assessment district would be established to fund the construction and operation and maintenance of the lights once a lighting plan is developed. To date there have not been any assessment districts requested and established in Centerville. The City has not installed any streetlights within residential areas aside from an occasional intersection, e.g. Bigger and Ambridge Roads.

Drainage Concerns

Q.  Am I permitted to outlet a drain through the curb?  Or into a City storm drain?
A.  By City Ordinance a sump pump discharge may not be outlet through the curb.  The reason for this is that a point source discharge is created that may result in a ponding water problem thereby creating a potential for ice build-up in the winter or stagnant water in the summer.  Residents are encouraged to outlet yard drains or sump pump discharge drains into a yard drainage swale or at a point 10-12 feet back of the curb so the water doesn’t create a point source discharge, but rather has time to be absorbed into the ground or gradually sheet flow into the street.

As an alternate location for discharge, a direct connection may be made to a City catch basin if the appropriate permit and inspections are acquired.  Call the City Engineer’s office at (937) 428-4782 for more information.  It should be noted that under no circumstances, may a sump pump discharge, a yard drain or a roof drain be connected to the sanitary system.

Q. My neighbor is dumping water on me from their downspouts, sump pump, etc.    What should I do?
A. Each property owner is responsible to maintain drainage paths on their individual property according to the overall drainage pattern for the area.  Additionally a property owner is not to create a drainage concern for a neighboring property.  When a dispute arises between property owners, it needs to be settled among the parties involved, as the properties in question are privately owned.  City staff may offer suggestions for implementation; however it is up to property owners to make necessary changes to their properties.

Street repair and resurfacing schedule

Q.  What is the City’s annual Road Improvement Program?
A.  The City’s Capital Improvement Program includes funding for repair and resurfacing Centerville’s public streets.  This work includes repair of deteriorated concrete curb and street panels, repair or reconstruction of broken storm sewer laterals and catch basins, reconstruction of deteriorated sidewalk and the addition of curb ramps at intersections, grinding the old asphalt surface, repair of failed pavement sections, crack sealing, and finally placement of a new asphalt surface.  In recent years the annual program has also included maintenance crack seal work on major thoroughfares to supplement crack seal work performed by City crews.    
Q.  How are streets chosen to be included in the annual program?
A.  All city streets are evaluated and rated each year with respect to their condition.  Types of distresses or deterioration considered include, but are not limited to cracking, surface deterioration, rutting, base failure and potholes.  Once all the streets are rated and ranked, a list of the most deteriorated streets is established and rough cost estimates are done for each street on the list.  Plugging these rough cost estimates into the annual budget dollars available, a recommendation is made for the streets and estimated cost for the annual program.  Consideration is given to grouping streets within neighborhoods together so the contractor can work in three or four areas rather than jump all around town.  Hopefully this allows the contractor to be more competitive in his bid.  Another factor considered is that of future plans for major work on the street such as replacement of a water main.  Hopefully the projects can be coordinated so as to complete all planned excavation work ahead of any resurfacing.

Q. Why does the City crack seal its streets?
A. Crack sealing is a maintenance tool used to seal the surface of the street to prohibit moisture from entering the pavement base.  If moisture is permitted to penetrate to the pavement base, freeze/ thaw cycles cause more rapid deterioration of the pavement structure.

Q. Why are concrete streets covered with asphalt?
A. Concrete is a rigid material and therefore requires joints to allow movement.  Once these joints start breaking down moisture can penetrate to the pavement base.  Given the many freeze/ thaw cycles experienced in this region, once pavement joints break open the concrete pavement deteriorates rapidly due to moisture trapped under the pavement as it expands and contracts with the temperature changes.  Covering the streets in asphalt in essence seals the surface to slow down the penetration of moisture.  Maintenance crack seal work is also necessary to seal reflective cracks that appear in the asphalt surface. 


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