Safe, ADA compliant, pedestrian-friendly neighborhoods are a priority for our community. An important component of this is the City's sidewalk repair program, developed to provide for the maintenance of sidewalks within Hiawatha. Iowa State Code 364.12 and City Code Chapter 136: Sidewalk Regulations and Chapter 50: Nuisance Abatement Procedure, provide the City of Hiawatha the ability to require the maintenance and repair of public sidewalks be the responsibility of the adjoining property owner.
For the purposes of this program, Hiawatha is divided into five (5) geographical areas. (See map) Every 2 years, the sidewalks in one of those areas are inspected in accordance with the criteria established by City Ordinance with oversight by the City Engineer to determine if sidewalk repairs are necessary. This will allow the City to inspect all sidewalks over a ten (10) year period. The parkway, driveway approaches, water stop boxes located outside of the sidewalk, etc. are not inspected as part of the program. Sidewalk curb ramps are the responsibility of the City of Hiawatha under this program.
In addition, sidewalks are inspected outside of the geographical area if a complaint is received on the condition of a sidewalk.
The inspector will mark pink arrows on sidewalk squares which meet one or more of the following criteria:
The following criteria defines a nuisance sidewalk.
The property owner(s) will be given at least 30 days to appeal the defect findings. Their original notification will indicate the date the appeal is to be heard before Council if any property owner chooses to appeal. The appeal date will be set a minimum of four (4) weeks following the date of the sidewalk repair notice.
The City will inspect all installations and repairs. All sidewalk installations and repairs shall comply with SUDAS standards as adopted by the City of Hiawatha. Existing sidewalks less than 5 feet in width will be permitted to be replaced at the existing width.
If the sidewalk is more than 5 feet in width, the City will share in the costs to repair the sidewalk. The City will be responsible for the costs to repair the sidewalk square footage in excess of a 5’ wide sidewalk. If the property owner is repairing the sidewalk, they must receive a permit from the City prior to commencement of repairs. If the City repairs the 8-foot sidewalk, the property owner will be invoiced for a 5’ width of the construction costs and permit fee plus an administrative fee.
The City is responsible for the maintenance and repair of curb ramps at public streets.
If the damage to the sidewalk is caused by a City owned item, i.e. a water main valve (not a service valve), a sewer manhole located within the sidewalk, or a tree located within the parkway, the City will take responsibility for the repair of the sidewalk as long as the damage is directly attributable to the item. Just because a City-owned item is present does not automatically mean that the item is the cause of the damage. Each situation will be evaluated individually by City staff.