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Help with decision about steps

Discussion in 'Hardscaping' started by Humble Earth Mover, Oct 5, 2007.

  1. Humble Earth Mover

    Humble Earth Mover LawnSite Member
    Posts: 167

    Hello all.

    Looking for some opinion regarding these steps. We are going to be demoing the sidewalk and replacing with pavers. Would it be best to leave the concrete stoop and build around it, or take it out and start fresh. I'd like to do columns on either side of the steps, but it might be too much for only 2 steps...maybe planters instead. Any help or advice would be appreciated.

    Picture 155.jpg
  2. McKeeLand

    McKeeLand LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 681

    I would demo the step and the pad on the porch. leave the porch walls and build your walls in front of them. this way your pavers will finish at the same spot as the old concrete pad. i would always avoid overlaying a porch like that. when we have done that it always comes back to bite us in the a$$.

    IMO the columns would be to much. i feel the columns should not be taller than the porch. a nice set of radius steps would set if off nice without over doing it.
  3. PaperCutter

    PaperCutter LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,943

    Short (one brick above landing height + cap) fat columns could work, but you'd want them pushed as far apart as possible, with the bottom tread dying into them.
  4. forestfireguy

    forestfireguy LawnSite Senior Member
    from nj
    Posts: 601

    I'd demo the whole thing and start from scratch, we never build on top of someone else work, too many variables. Besides if you're going to the trouble of demoing the walkway how much more will it take to rip the landing as well. If you have a machine there it'll take like another 15 minutes tops. Depending on what kind of machine you might be able to pick up the whole thing in one shot and load it right into a truck/container.
  5. McKeeLand

    McKeeLand LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 681

    a lot of times these porches are poured in place concrete, with re bar reinforcement and go straight down to a foundation. some times they are tied right into the foundation of the house. we found it easier to leave the porch walls in place and just build in front of them. now if it is an older house where the porch is falling apart, by all means take it out and start over. this porch looks pretty new, hard to tell if it is block or concrete though.
  6. zedosix

    zedosix LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,635

    If it is poured in place which I assume it is, I say leave it alone and bond directly to the top and overhanging sides. Build a couple of planters or columns on the side of it to hide the sides of concrete step. After that just construct the two steps required in front. This way the steps are completely independent of the top porch. Never build around and back fill you are asking for trouble this way. I would remove that small step in front though.

    eastern 1 028 (Medium).jpg

    eastern 1 027 (Medium).jpg

    eastern 1 025 (Medium).jpg
  7. paponte

    paponte LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,366

    I would agree with Zedo, the cement looks new. I would either overlay pavers, or use a veneer. If you are going to do smaller columns I would do them on the outcoves of the entrance, it would fit better. I would also lose the small step.
  8. Captains Landscape

    Captains Landscape LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 333

    rock face granite landing w/ step. wrought iron hand rails to bluestone walk. look at the architecture of that house.
  9. Humble Earth Mover

    Humble Earth Mover LawnSite Member
    Posts: 167

    I originally thought about doing granite steps, but was having trouble locating them. Zedo....those photos really capture what I had in mind. You say you left the concrete walls in tact...was it a solid pour? This one is definitely a solid pour and I'm not sure how it ties to the foundation. Also, I don't know if you can see it in the pic, but there is some molding that runs down the sides of the house. Is this going to be an issue with trying to widen the stoop?

    BTW - the existing concrete is in good shape and it's probably 7+ years old
  10. kootoomootoo

    kootoomootoo LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,369

    Which block did you use for the walkway border zedo.

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