34th Street

Streetscape

Maintaining Granite Corners

Constant monitoring, cleaning, and maintenance keep 10,000 individual granite pavers and more than 2,200 linear feet of custom curbing attractive and well-functioning.

Angelito Jusay Photography

The next time you’re out on the sidewalk in the 34th Street District, take a look downward as you approach a street corner. You’ll notice that the concrete of the sidewalk gives way to an attractive granite corner. There are 103 of those granite corners in the district, along with 12 granite mid-block crossings, all with ADA-compliant ramps installed and maintained by 34th Street Partnership. All told, the granite corners and crossings consist of 10,000 individual pavers (each measuring 2’ x 2’) and more than 2,200 linear feet of custom curbing.  

Maintaining these assets takes vigilance. Though made entirely of granite, the corners and crossings are subject to extreme stresses, including constant expansion and contraction caused by weather, vibrations caused by street and building construction, and, of course, the daily pitter-patter of millions of feet. To ensure corners are always safe and attractive, 34th Street Partnership’s Capital Department has developed a vigorous program that includes continuous inspection and assessment of the assets, rapid deployment of skilled personnel when repairs or other adjustments are needed, frequent cleaning, and systemized charts indicating what actions have been performed at each location.

Our staff is constantly searching for conditions that may cause tripping, falling, or slipping by pedestrians, and are quick to deploy workers to repair, reset, or replace compromised pavers. To date in 2014, our crews have reset 80 loose pavers, replaced another 80 damaged pavers, grouted nearly 5,000 linear feet between pavers, and caulked more than 1,000 feet of joints between pavers and the concrete sidewalk. 

A busy district such as ours leaves residue on pavers, including grease, grime, oil, paint, and garbage residue that can make the granite slippery or unsightly. To keep them clean, we use a combination of in-house employees and contractor services to pressure-wash them, always performed during the late hours of the day to avoid disrupting pedestrians and local businesses.

Tying all this together is an organized information system. We record every paver or curb section that has been subject to repair or another maintenance procedure. We take before and after photographs, and note the nature, scope, and complexity of every action.

 

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