Sidewalk Repair

Sidewalk Image - Lamppost - Streets


We have almost 380 miles of sidewalks throughout the City. Well-maintained sidewalks allow for safe pedestrian travel, add value to individual properties, and decrease the liability faced by property owners due to tripping hazards.

California Streets and Highway Code Section 5610, et seq. and San Mateo Municipal Code Chapter 17.24 place responsibility on the individual property owners to maintain their sidewalk area in good repair and condition. Property owners are liable for any damage or injury incurred as a result of their failure to maintain their sidewalk area in a safe condition. 

Condition of Sidewalks

A sidewalk is considered in good condition if there are not any tripping hazards that could cause damage or injury. A tripping hazard could be caused by: uneven pavement, missing pavement, cracks or holes in the pavement, etc. If a sidewalk is not in good condition, the individual property owner must begin the process of repairs.

How to Begin Repairs

After the condition of the sidewalk has been assessed, you may perform the work yourself or hire an independent contractor. You or your contractor must:

  1. Have a Class A or C license with the City and insurance on file with the City.
  2. Obtain an Encroachment Permit.
  3. Comply with the Sidewalk Standard Drawings for sidewalk construction.
  4. Notify the City of the anticipated work, and have the City inspect and accept the work in accordance with the encroachment permit requirements.

Notice to Repair Letter

When we identify a sidewalk that needs repair, we issue the property owner a notice. When a property owner receives a notice from us, they have 90 days to respond. If a property owner receives a Notice to Repair, they will need to obtain an Encroachment Permit and notify the City of anticipated work.  

Reporting Sidewalk Issues

If you would like to report sidewalk issues on your street or in your neighborhood, feel free to contact us at Public Works. If possible, please provide your contact information, location of the sidewalk issue (including address or nearest cross streets), description of the issue, and pictures.

Public Works may take immediate action to mitigate the hazard (e.g. closing the sidewalk, remove the tripping hazard, mark and highlight the hazard, etc.) and will notify the property owner(s) of his/her maintenance of sidewalk responsibility, per the California Streets and Highway Code.


For additional information, please look below for any links provided. If you have any questions about your sidewalk repair, you may call Public Works at (650) 522-7300 or email