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Promoting root growth in sidewalk cutoutstree in sidewalk cut out

Sites with deep well drained soils can sometimes support healthy trees with minimal sidewalk lifting around cutouts. This situation is not common in highly disturbed soils such as downtown districts and malls. The disadvantage of encouraging healthy trees in poorly designed cutouts is that roots near the trunk of healthy trees often raise the surrounding sidewalk. Techniques designed to encourage root growth beneath the pavement around individual sidewalk or pavement cutouts without affecting pavement integrity are in practice today.

Remember that all these designs include compromises and that they may not be suited for all sites. Many seem expensive in the short run but can result in a streetscape that lasts many decades. Inexpensive solutions can result in poor streetscapes that do not function well.

Cutout detail one, Cutout detail 2

See: Techniques for increasing soil space for roots