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City of Lakeland Brick Street Program Overview

The City of Lakeland is responsible for the maintenance of streets to ensure vehicular and pedestrian safety, to improve and maintain ride-ability, and to preserve their character. The typical practice for major road maintenance is an asphalt overlay on an existing asphalt road. The Public Works Department has a limited annual budget for the maintenance of such roads. A typical asphalt road may require major maintenance work within 10 to 15 years.

In recent years there has been a renewed interest in brick streets within the City. In the past, many brick streets were covered with asphalt in lieu of repairing or restoring the brick street. Periodically, residents inquire about the installation or reclamation of brick roads where asphalt roads currently exist. A properly installed brick street may not require major maintenance work within 40 to 50 years. In addition to the reduced maintenance cost, brick streets add to the character of residential neighborhoods, helping to maintain or enhance property values. Because of their textured surface, brick streets also tend to reduce the speed of traffic.

Brick Street Application Procedures

Property owners fronting a continuous area of a City-maintained roadway within the Central City Area of Lakeland may petition the City to install or reclaim a brick street. The petitioning process and the cost-sharing principles for such action are described herein. The net cost will be assessed to each property owner based on their linear footage of property frontage or other basis consistent with Chapter 170 Florida Statutes or other applicable laws.

The following procedures will be used by property owners and the City of Lakeland in upgrading existing City maintained asphalt roadways to brick.

  1. Petition - Property owners may request the City of Lakeland to replace the existing street surface with street bricks by submitting a petition to the City utilizing the “Brick Street Request Form” (attached) signed by owners representing at least sixty-six (66) percent of the lots fronting on the segment of the street to be bricked. Petitioners must also provide proof that a good faith attempt has been made to notify 100% of the property owners on the proposed street of the petition. Proof will normally consist of a receipt from a registered letter or certified mail or, in the event personal contact was made, an affidavit attesting to such fact. Streets proposed for bricking must be at least one block long (i.e.: intersection to intersection). A petition form is available from the Public Works Department. Public Works staff will develop a cost estimate to install or reclaim the brick surface. The cost estimate will include placement of a new road base and curbs where needed. It will also include certain credits against the cost as described further in this Brick Street Policy.
  2.  Public Meeting - Public participation is essential to the implementation of a successful street bricking program. A brick street request shall include a public meeting organized by the City to which all potentially affected residents are invited. The “potentially affected residents” shall include all property owners on the street that is being evaluated for bricking. During this meeting, City staff will review the project scope, costs, as well as provide an opportunity for residents and property owners to ask questions and share concerns. City of Lakeland representatives will attend the meeting to obtain input and gauge neighborhood acceptance.
  3. Assessment - The Public Works Department will prepare an estimate of the total assessment and the assessment for each property necessary to fund the project. Installation charges will be calculated on both a single payment basis and on a ten-year assessment basis on each property owner’s tax bill at an interest rate determined by the City Commission.
  4. Survey - Subsequent to the public meeting, the City will also conduct a “mail-back” survey through certified mail of all potentially affected property owners within the project limits. Property owner information will be based on the Polk County Property Appraiser’s records. A proposal for a brick street must be supported by property owners representing a minimum of two thirds (66.7%) of the parcels on the street (or affected block(s) if the project involves less than the entire street). Only legitimate “yes” votes received by the City before the specified due date will be counted as supporting votes. The mail out survey must be signed by at least one property owner for each parcel and will include a statement indicating that the individual signing recognizes that there may be an assessment against their property through a special assessment program per the City’s Brick Street Policy. Signatures of persons or entities renting or leasing property will not be considered.
  5. City Commission Approval – Upon receipt of the above survey result showing support by property owners representing a minimum of two thirds (66.7%) of the affected properties, the request will be presented to the City Commission for approval. The City will coordinate the installation of the new street bricks (or reclamation of the existing street bricks, as the case may be) and curbing, if required, with the imposition and levy of the special assessments. Upon approval by the City Commission, the Public Works Department will hold a coordination meeting with the property owners in order to establish construction schedules and procedures.


Review Criteria and Priority of Petition Requests

Review Criteria Include:

  1. Street must be within the Core Improvement Area
  2. Street may not have a posted speed limit in excess of 30 mph
  3. Street must be residential in nature and may not exceed 5,000 vehicle trips per day
  4. Street should have at least 75% of the existing brick in good condition

All street bricking requests will be subject to the availability of funding and City construction schedule. It is the responsibility of City staff to prioritize petition requests when multiple petitions have been submitted that exceed the available funds.
The Public Works staff first will determine whether the proposed street is listed in the City street maintenance schedule. This list identifies the roads scheduled for maintenance within the next ten years. Priority will be given to those petitions for roads that are within (3) years of scheduled maintenance. The next factor in assigning priority to competing petitions will be the consideration of the traffic calming priority. If a street meets traffic calming criteria, then the petition will be given a higher priority consideration.


Determining Brick Street Upgrade Costs

  1. Project Costs – The cost for the bricking project will include the costs of reclaiming an existing brick street underneath asphalt, or new street bricks, road base, sand, labor, equipment and future maintenance costs. If curb replacement and/or reconstruction of handicap ramps or driveways are required for the design of the new brick street, such costs shall also be part of the project costs. Video detection will be an added expense at signalized intersections that currently have loop detectors cut into the asphalt pavement. Loop detectors cannot be cut into brick pavement.
  2. Credits – The current Public Works Department budget provides for the periodic milling and resurfacing of asphalt or asphalt covered brick streets. A credit will be given against the costs of bricking for the typical costs of asphalt surfacing the City would have provided at no cost to the property owners. This credit may include asphalt milling, road base, asphalt, curbs, labor and equipment. Additional credit will be given for the cost savings realized from not being required to resurface the asphalt road an estimated two more times in the following fifty years.


A = Total length of proposed street frontage (both sides of street), feet
B = Cost of constructing the new brick street
C = Cost of replacing deteriorated curbs, handicap ramps and driveways,
if required for the design of the brick street
D = Cost of maintaining the new brick street within the next 50 Years
E = Cost of maintaining the current asphalt street within the next 50 Years
F = Total cost to be assessed to all property owners fronting the street
G = Per linear foot cost assessed to property owners fronting the street
H = Length of an individual property street frontage, feet
I = Total cost assessed to the individual property owner

F = B + C + D – E
G = F / A
I = G x H


Project: Converting South Boulevard between McDonald St. and Ridgewood Street from the current asphalt street to a new brick street

A = Total length of proposed street frontage = 313’ x 2 = 626’
B = Cost of constructing the new brick street = $83,867
C = Cost of replacing deteriorated curbs = $11,460
D = Cost of maintaining the new brick street within the next 50 years = $17,324
E = Cost of maintaining the current asphalt street within the next 50 years = $40,392
F = $83,867 + $11,460 + $17,324 – $40,392 = $72,259
G = $72,259 / 626’ = $115.43 per linear foot

For a property with a 50’ lot frontage, the property owner’s share of the assessment would be a one-time cost of $5,771.50 as computed below.

I = $115.43/LF x 50’ = $5,771.50

The City will also compute the property owner’s share based on a ten-year assessment plan at an interest rate determined by the City Commission. For an interest rate of 8%, the annual tax bill would be approximately $860.

Brick Streets in New Developments

The developer of a new subdivision may elect to install brick streets if approved by the City. However, installation costs in new subdivisions are required to be paid by the developer at the time of installation and will not be assessed by the City to the individual lots. The developer is required to follow the City of Lakeland Public Works Standards for brick road installation.