Why not just create a slope over the roots? If the uplift is only a little bit can’t the sidewalk just be left alone?

Answer

The ADA is very specific about what makes a sidewalk legally accessible. A running slope of as little as 5% grade and a cross slope greater than 2% are not considered accessible and thus not permissible. Similarly, an uplift of as little as ¼ of an inch is not considered accessible.  Cracks and surface gaps can also make a sidewalk inaccessible. Once the City has been put on notice of a sidewalk that is not accessible by someone covered by the ADA, the City has a legal obligation to repair the sidewalk, and thus the City cannot leave that sidewalk alone. Even a ¼ inch uplift can be a substantial barrier to someone using a wheelchair.


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