Stone patio or walkway OVER concrete & grass

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  #1  
Old 06-30-06, 11:28 AM
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Stone patio or walkway OVER concrete & grass

There is an area by my house that has concrete slabs (cracked and unlevel) and flagstone slate walkway which is falling apart. I was considering making the area larger and finishing it off a little bit nicer.

In general, when you want to build a patio or walkway, you normally excavate down, lay 4" of sand, stones, etc... before laying the pavers or stones. But that is usually because you want to make it level with the ground. What if I want the whole thing to be about 1 step above ground level? Can I just build a frame out of railroad ties, put down sand to level and start the process from there right over all of the concrete and grass and flagstone walkway that is falling apart. Of course I would remove all the loose pieces, but do I have to go through the trouble of getting all the concrete slabs up or can I just go right over them?

thanks for any advice.
 
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  #2  
Old 07-01-06, 02:15 AM
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Hi Slowlemur,

I see no reason why you couldn't build a raised patio. I wouldn't suggest you use railroad ties because of the creosote. Freshly treated creosote lumber can leach into the soil for several years and continues to give off vapors over a seven to nine year period. It can also get on your shoes and clothes.

You don't say where you live and how large an area is to be done. You also don't say how large the concrete slabs are, but I see potential problems with leaving the concrete slabs in place. Here in the Mid-Atlantic we just had 12" of rain. If you leave the concrete slabs under the area the water won't be able to seep into the subsoil. I would recommend removing it. If you live in an northern zone, with freeze and thaw issues, you could also have problems with shifting and/or heaving from water that will freeze on top of the concrete slabs.

As to the flagstone you might consider a 'free to good home' add in your local paper. Folks can come and remove it themselves. Broken concrete can be used to build retaining walls. They're called rip rap.
http://www.roddaandsons.com/retaining.pg3.html

Newt
 
  #3  
Old 07-01-06, 12:36 PM
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Thanks for the info and suggestions!

My plan was to regrade the with sand first away from the house (over the concrete slabs) and then put down a layer of 5mm plastic from the house out and then do the rest with sand until level. I figure the drainage would be better that way. I'm from New England and we were pounded a few weeks ago with close to two weeks of straight rain....

I'll think about it some more, I was thinking it shouldn't be too much of a problem, but just wanted a sanity check. Thanks...
 
  #4  
Old 07-01-06, 01:54 PM
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Location: Maryland zone 7
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You are very welcome! Keep in mind that the plastic won't allow for drainage and will hold water. I'm sure you already know this, but you'll need builder's sand aka sharp sand.

Newt
 
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