Street and Driveway Movement FAQS
What causes street and driveway movement?
Much street and driveway movement starts with temperature and moisture changes in the soil below. Some soils do not drain well and expand or contract as moisture levels change. Expansion and contraction of the soil pushes on foundations, driveways, sidewalks, and pavements. Another condition contributing to driveway and street movement is thermal expansion and contraction of the concrete itself.
Does street and driveway movement happen everywhere?
Street movement occurs in many locations depending on the terrain, temperature fluctuations and soil types. Street movement is often more noticeable at the end of cul-de-sacs, at “T” intersections, on hills and on the outside of street curves. This is because stopping and turning vehicles are frequently pushing on the pavement at these locations.
Has Wentzville done anything to manage street movement?
Yes. Our street replacement and new construction standards include a compacted rock subgrade, pavement underdrains, and full depth pavement expansion joints. The City also encourages homeowners, builders, and developers to install full-depth expansion joints at several locations in their private driveways.
How does Wentzville handle resident concerns about street movement?
If the City receives a concern about street or driveway movement, we perform an inspection for misaligned joints and gaps along the street edge, sidewalks, and driveway expansion joints. If noticeable movement exists, the City may remove and replace several street slabs and install pavement underdrains to improve subgrade drainage. The City may also consider placement or replacement of expansion joints in the street, or between the street and a private driveway.
How does the City replace an expansion joint at a private driveway?
If the City inspection indicates the need for replacement of an expansion joint between the street and a private driveway, it is performed at no charge to residents. This is a service provided by the City even though private driveways are the maintenance responsibility of the property owner. The City typically removes two to four inches of driveway slab at the street curb, and then fills in this area with expansion material.
Is expansion joint replacement a permanent solution?
Not always. Streets and driveways will continue to move slightly. There have been occasions where the City has provided second replacements of expansion joints due to continuing movement.
Is the City responsible for the resulting damage that may occur due to street or driveway movement?
Based on current case law (A.K. and Virginia Zumwalt vs. Boone County, MO), municipalities and governing bodies are not responsible for damage on private property that may be associated with street or driveway movement. Consequently, the City’s insurance carrier does not reimburse homeowners.
What can residents do to lessen the chances their property might be damaged?
Residents should make sure there are full depth expansion joints in place in several locations within their driveway. Some expansion joints do not extend the full depth of the slab and pressure may build up against the home foundation or the driveway slab. Residents should annually inspect their driveway expansion joints in late spring or early summer and look for signs of joint compression.
If you feel your private driveway expansion joints are showing signs of compression, you may enter a concern with the City by clicking here. The City will send a knowledgeable and experienced inspector to review your concerns and answer any questions you may have.