Fences & Sidewalks


With few exceptions, fences are the property of homeowners. Repairs to fences by homeowners are subject to building permit and code compliance.

Repairs will be made to privately owned fences if damaged by City trees or City-owned equipment.

Repairs will be made to privately owned fences which border public access areas that are damaged by graffiti or vandalism.


Sidewalk repair and maintenance are the responsibility of the fronting property owner (Streets & Highways Code Sections 5610-5618). However, if alerted to a hazardous situation, the City will place a temporary asphalt patch to mitigate trip and fall hazards caused by uplifted sidewalk panels until permanent concrete repairs can be made by the property owner.

Sidewalk and path inspections are conducted periodically throughout the year in an attempt to minimize hazardous conditions to pedestrian traffic; property owners are alerted when unsafe conditions are discovered. Despite our preventative efforts, trees grow and sidewalks move causing new and undetected hazards. Reports of uneven sidewalk edges by the public are greatly appreciated.

Hazardous Sidewalk Repair Program

The City of Rohnert Park maintains approximately 180 miles of public sidewalk in safe condition. Due to the magnitude of this task, not all the sidewalks can be constantly maintained or repaired simultaneously. The Department of Public Works will repair, replace, or otherwise mitigate trip hazards in the public right-of-way that fit within the scope of the Hazardous Sidewalk Repair and Replacement Program.

Program Background

The Hazardous Sidewalk Repair and Replacement Program is part of our continuing efforts to abate trip hazards and to provide safer and more aesthetically pleasing public infrastructure for our citizens.


A hazardous sidewalk is defined as a sidewalk, or portion thereof, that becomes defective or unsafe for public travel due to broken or missing pieces, unevenness, or upheaval which causes at least a 1/2" difference in height between two adjoining portions of the sidewalk, or one that has an abrupt change in elevation.

Legal Responsibility

The State of California Streets and Highways Code, Section 5610 stipulates that the owner of the fronting property is responsible for maintaining the sidewalk, curb and gutter, and park strip area in good and non-hazardous condition. Property owners are required to install, construct, reconstruct, repave, and repair the sidewalk adjacent to their properties at their own cost:

“The owners of lots or portions of lots fronting on any portion of a public street or place is improved or if and when the area between the property line of the adjacent property and the street line is maintained as a park or parking strip, shall maintain any sidewalk in such condition that the sidewalk will not endanger persons or property and maintain it in a condition which will not interfere with the public convenience in the use of those works.”

Also, Section 1.24.030 (D.4) of the Rohnert Park Municipal Code stipulates that:

“It shall be unlawful and declared a public nuisance for any person owning, renting, leasing, occupying or having charge or possession of any property in the city of Rohnert Park, to maintain such property in such a manner that any of the following conditions are found to exist thereon:…sidewalks…which are maintained in such condition as to become so defective, unsightly, or in such a condition of deterioration or disrepair that the same constitutes visual blight or reduces the aesthetic appearance of the neighborhood or is offensive to the senses or is detrimental to nearby properties.”

Property owners are potentially liable for personal injuries caused by their failure to maintain reasonably safe sidewalks. Maintenance responsibility includes repair or replacement of damaged or displaced concrete, abatement of weeds or debris, and trimming of shrubs to keep the area free of hazards. Property owners are encouraged to perform repairs to their sidewalks before a condition becomes a defect which would give rise to a violation. 

Property owners are not exempt from liability for the cost of repair even though the damage may have been caused by trees in the public right-of-way. In an effort to beautify our City’s neighborhoods, street trees are planted in front of each residence. Careful consideration is given in selecting street trees that will not cause sidewalk damage. 

NOTE: An encroachment permit is required to perform repairs, or replace, a defective sidewalk in the public right-of-way; and to plant, remove, or replace trees in the public right-of-way. These can be acquired from the Rohnert Park Engineering Department at 707-588-2230.

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