Naperville resident, Jim Haselhorst, submitted the following comment to last week’s posting about sidewalk repair/replacement cost-sharing:
“The city has replaced the sidewalk in front of my house several times in the last couple of years with zero cost to me.
Of course this sidewalk’s problems started when it was torn-up to put in a new water main. The city contractor that did this job made zero efforts to do it right since they did not seem to be concerned about city inspections and oversight. They got all the elevations wrong, as demonstrated by the varying heights of water access covers and fire hydrant along the street (not even close to what they were before all this “new” work). They also did not make any effort to properly compact the soil when they back filled around the new water main.
In less then a year portions of the sidewalk had sunk so much that they cracked and needed to be replaced. And of course they were replaced by a city contractor, who again did not do the job right. So it was no surprise that within a year the sidewalk was sinking and cracking again.
Currently the sidewalk along the front of my property looks like something that belongs on a carnival ride. Of course the city has sent people out to grind down and smooth off the tripping hazards created by the uneven edges of the shifting segments of sidewalk. But that has not fixed the “low” spots that fills with water and during the winter become ice skating rinks.
And you do not want to get me started on the Cluster F*#k that is my driveway apron since the city hired contractor redid it along with the alley. Again a contractor the did it wrong because of inadequate city oversight.
There are two ironies here. The first is that the sidewalk in front of my house had been around for decades without any problems until these city contractors showed up. The second is the amount of money and resources the city has spent fixing this mess could have easily covered the full cost of fixing other sidewalks in Naperville if only proper oversight had been exercised over city contractors to make sure they are following city codes, which they clearly are not.”
It’s crystal clear that Naperville city officials typically want residents to share in the cost of sidewalk repair/replacement, but the nightmare of shoddy repair work belongs entirely with the homeowner.