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Replacing lawn between houses w/ concrete--potential issues?

  • Last Updated:
  • Oct 13th, 2018 9:28 am
[OP]
Sr. Member
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Dec 7, 2012
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Ontario

Replacing lawn between houses w/ concrete--potential issues?

Many thanks to everyone for their helpful responses.
Last edited by EliteJay on Oct 11th, 2018 10:09 am, edited 4 times in total.
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25 replies
Deal Fanatic
Jan 25, 2007
5370 posts
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Paris
Concrete seems like such a bad idea as that are could shift. I’d use river rock or 3/4 crushed with some fun stepping stones for drainage.
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Newbie
Mar 6, 2011
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Ajax, ON
I would get more quotes from other vendors if you’re unsure about the cost. They should be able to advise you on the potential issues based on what they see.
Banned
Mar 13, 2018
1385 posts
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Don't do concrete as it's not permeable and water will just sheet off

You can do stones, wood chips or other permeable paver.
Member
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Oct 24, 2016
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ON
How about laying down a geotextile fabric to prevent weed growth along with decorative stone like river rocks or 3/4" clear gravel which is a drainage stone.
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Deal Guru
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Jun 12, 2007
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London
EliteJay wrote:
Oct 10th, 2018 1:14 am
Hmm what do you mean the concrete could shift? It should be similar to a concrete driveway.
We considered gravel and stones but thought it looked a bit messy especially if weeds start growing.
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Image

Builders have a bad reputation for packing down the soil beside a basement wall. This allows the soil to settle down several inches over the years. If you pour concrete, the slab could tilt towards one house or the other dumping all the rain water against one basement wall or the other (or bow so there's a huge puddle between the houses)
Sr. Member
Nov 16, 2011
671 posts
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HAMILTON
with dirt/grass the rain, snow melt, etc leave someplace for the water to go. With concrete, you are simply creating another problem with water run off.

Spend a little bit of time, dig it up and put down some new sod so that it looks nice and mow it once in a while. It is not a large area to devote a little bit of time to.

Don't further increase the concrete jungle.
Sr. Member
Nov 16, 2011
671 posts
412 upvotes
HAMILTON
with dirt/grass the rain, snow melt, etc leave someplace for the water to go. With concrete, you are simply creating another problem with water run off.

Spend a little bit of time, dig it up and put down some new sod so that it looks nice and mow it once in a while. It is not a large area to devote a little bit of time to.

Don't further increase the concrete jungle.
Deal Addict
Jul 3, 2017
3557 posts
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It's likely that grass will never grow very well in the narrow canyon between tightly-spaced city houses, but don't use concrete. It's environmentally unfriendly, causes runoff problems, and starts looking pretty ugly when it inevitably shifts and cracks. Put down a permeable landscaping barrier to prevent weed growth, then gravel and paving stones. You will have to do some maintenance to prevent weed growth in the dust that inevitably accumulates in the gravel, but it's not much of a burden. It will look way better than concrete.
Sr. Member
May 2, 2011
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Oakville, ON
+1 for the river rock suggestion. Concrete is expensive and you will constantly have a drainage issue. You both likely have downspouts draining to that area. Where would the water go? During the winter it would likely freeze and create a skating lane between your houses.
Deal Addict
Feb 5, 2009
2657 posts
771 upvotes
Newmarket
I will also advise against the concrete, water issues, if not done properly shifting and cracking, expensive.

The best option is landscaping fabric covered with some kind of rocks, water has place to run off, much cheaper especially if you roll up your sleeves and do it yourself. Since the space is narrow it doesn't get much sun the growth will be minimal, I believe the plant growth can be further reduced by putting crushed limestone (although I may be wrong here). I had a similar solution between our houses, it takes very little maintenance, just pulling few weeds few times in the season.
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Oct 16, 2008
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Maple
+1. I did my side with neighbour 15 years ago. Many other neighbours followed. With garden fabrics (best 2 layers), rocks and some works, it cost us less than $300 combined.
Homerhomer wrote:
Oct 10th, 2018 12:00 pm
I will also advise against the concrete, water issues, if not done properly shifting and cracking, expensive.

The best option is landscaping fabric covered with some kind of rocks, water has place to run off, much cheaper especially if you roll up your sleeves and do it yourself. Since the space is narrow it doesn't get much sun the growth will be minimal, I believe the plant growth can be further reduced by putting crushed limestone (although I may be wrong here). I had a similar solution between our houses, it takes very little maintenance, just pulling few weeds few times in the season.
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Dec 4, 2009
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Aurora
My parents did this, it looks ridiculous.
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Lucky
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Oct 23, 2008
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Toronto (Markham)
Use stones or something similar for water permeability. You don't want rain water or snow melt to pool and then run up against the concrete foundation.
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