Dropped kerb application guidance

Application Form

1) A non-refundable charge of £89.68 will need to be submitted at the time of application.

2) Payment can be made by BACS RBS – Account Number 31336726 Sort Code 16-04-00 quoting the Request summary reference number, or cheque payable to Balfour Beatty Living Places quoting the Request summary reference number on the back of the cheque.

3) An Inspector will visit the site and a survey plan of the proposed vehicle crossing will be completed. A quote will then be sent to you and if you agree with the design a signature will be required to confirm acceptance. If it is not possible for a crossing to be provided we will advise you in writing. There is no appeals procedure under the Highways Act, but all applications will be considered fairly in line with these notes.

The Approval Process

4) If you are a tenant of a council or housing association or leasehold property you will require the permission of the relevant landlord. Please submit a copy of the written permission with the application form.

5) If you live on a classified road, an “A”, “B” or “C” road, you will require planning permission. In this instance please contact Southampton City Council Planning Office who will advise you of the procedure, telephone number 023 8083 2603.  We are unable to process applications until planning permission is granted.  Occasionally planning permission is required for some other crossings. If this is the case we will advise you.

6) From October 2008 new rules apply for householders wanting to pave over their front gardens. If the surface to be covered is more than five square metres planning permission will be required for the laying of traditional impermeable driveways that do not control rainwater from running off onto roads. Planning permission will not be required if a new driveway uses permeable (or porous) surfacing which allows water to drain through, such as gravel, permeable concrete block paving or porous asphalt, or if the rainwater is directed to a lawn or border to drain naturally.

7) You must check your deeds to confirm there is no restriction on parking a vehicle in the curtilage of the property.

8) You must have sufficient room on your property for a vehicle to be parked without it overhanging the public highway. The minimum length required is 4.8 metres (this measurement to be taken between the highway boundary i.e. rear of public footway and the face of the building), as shown in the diagram below.

Diagram: the carriageway, kerb and footway end at the highway boundary, below which there are cars, a parking or manoeuvring area and buildings. The minimum width of parking space on a property is recommended to be 2.4 metres while the minimum depth is usually 4.8 metres (between the highway boundary and a building, such as a home). The minimum depth of space between the highway boundary and a building is greater (6 metres) when a garage, front or back door, or means of escape, is present. When a building projects out into the parking area, for example with bay windows, the depth measurement is from this projection.

The Highway Services Partnership may be flexible in approving off-road parking in-parallel to the footway with a minimum depth of 3m from the face of the property to the public highway boundary and when highway safety is not compromised.  There must be no adjusting movements of a vehicle made on the highway when entering or exiting the property. To allow sufficient manoeuvring space for the vehicle to enter and exit the parallel position in one movement, a minimum width of 7.2m is required for such applications, as shown in the diagram below.

Diagram: the property/building must have a parking area that is at least 3 metres deep and 7.2 metres wide, not including the footway

However, with this arrangement often resulting in the unacceptable loss of more than one on-street parking space, such locations will only be approved on a case-by-case basis. 

The policy of the Highway Authority in relation to the minimum depths has changed over time. This may mean that properties in your road have a vehicle access crossing that does not comply with the above criteria and appears in all respects to be very similar to your own proposals. Nevertheless, you will need to comply with the standards set out above and the fact that someone else may have a shorter parking space will not be taken into account when assessing your proposals.

If you intend to install driveway gates, these must open inwards onto your property.

9) Vehicle crossings will generally not be approved from a lay-by, and the impact on other designated parking areas may need to be considered.

10) A crossing will generally not be approved within 15 metres of a junction.

11) A crossing will not usually be approved, or an existing crossing widened, so that it covers the full width of your property.

12) In general, only one crossing will be approved into a property. Separate “in and out” crossings are not usually permitted. In urban areas this may reduce parking available to other residents.  In quiet cul-de-sacs or in roads with little used footways, where highway safety will not be compromised, a second crossing may be permitted.  If you have vehicle access to the front and rear of your property, crossings at each frontage may also be allowed, provided it is not possible to drive from one to the other through the property. Please contact us for advice in these circumstances.

13) Once the survey is complete we will write back to you with an approval (or otherwise) together with an estimate for the works. Such approval will be valid for a period of 3 months from the date of the letter.  Works will not be scheduled until we have received payment in full. The estimate will not include additional costs which may be charged by public utilities (such as electricity, gas and water undertakers) for any necessary alterations caused by the works to their supply services.  Please note that some public utilities will only provide an estimate of cost.  The final cost is payable by you, irrespective of whether it is greater or less than their initial estimate.

14) Entrance markings (white H bar marking on the carriageway) can be provided upon construction of the crossing. A non-refundable application charge of £55.00 (inc. VAT) will need to be paid when you have submitted your application. If an H-bar application is subsequently approved and you wish to proceed, an installation fee of £65.00 (inc. VAT) will be charged for all markings up to five metres in length. If the required marking is longer than five metres, a further £10.00 (inc. VAT) per metre is payable. The marking must span the extent of the dropped kerb. The total cost will be provided, if the application is approved, prior to installation.

Other Helpful Notes

15) If the vehicular crossing requires trees, lamp columns, telegraph poles etc, to be repositioned this will increase the cost considerably. In these circumstances, it may be cheaper for you to consider an alternative position for the access.

16) Driveways and parking areas should be constructed to prevent water running onto the highway.  If the construction is of loose materials (eg gravel) this must be prevented from being carried onto the highway.

17) In conservation areas, the removal of or alterations to boundary walls or fences and works within your garden may require planning permission. Please contact Southampton City Council Planning Office for advice.

18) If you need to remove an existing wall or fence to allow your vehicle into your property, the quotation will include the provision of concrete edging to support the footway. It is essential for you to remove walls or fencing before the crossing is constructed The Officer will assume the level of the footway at the boundary between the pavement and your property will not alter. If you propose to alter this level due to works on your property, please give details on the application form.

19) To prevent damage to the newly constructed vehicle crossing, the works to the driveway/parking area must be carried out prior to the construction of the vehicular crossing.  Please ensure any works carried out are made safe to passers by as Southampton City Council cannot be held liable for accidents on private property.