Sidewalk Information

Bozeman Municipal Code (BMC)

This is a picture of a sidewalkSidewalk repair and maintenance - §12.20.035 BMC

According to §12.20.035 of the Bozeman Municipal Code, all property owners and/or property managers are required to maintain or repair all sidewalks adjacent to their property. Property owners/managers will be liable for any damages to people or property caused by their failure to maintain or replace damaged sidewalks. The City may notify property owners/managers, in writing, that sidewalk repairs are necessary on their property. Property owners/managers will then have thirty (30) working days from receipt of the notice to repair or replace the sidewalk. If the repairs are not made at the end of 30 days, the City may have the sidewalk replaced at the expense of the owner/manager. If the property owner/ manager does not reimburse the City for the cost of repairs, the City may put a lien on the lot and the case will be turned over to the City Attorney’s Office for prosecution.
All new or replaced sidewalks must be inspected by the City Engineer’s Office. To schedule an inspection, please call  582-2280.

Sidewalk snow removal - §12.24.020 BMC

This is a picture of a shoveled sidewalkThere’s an old joke about life in Montana. It goes something like this: “There are only two seasons in Montana….nine months of winter and three months of relatives.” That may not be entirely true, some relatives come for the skiing, too. If you have moved here from a warmer climate, you will want to invest in a snow shovel or snow blower. Snow accumulations of six or more inches have been recorded in Bozeman as late as mid-June and as early as the end of August.
The City Engineer’s Office is charged with administering the City’s sidewalk snow removal program. One part-time, seasonal employee is hired to inspect city sidewalks for compliance with City Ordinance 1171 and 1529. Sidewalks are inspected after each snow storm that produces a significant snowfall, with priority given to sidewalks in business districts with high pedestrian traffic. Sidewalks in business districts are required to clear snow by 9:00am of the next business day or by 12:00pm of the next non-business day, or within four (4) business hours of any snow or ice accumulation, whichever is sooner. Residential sidewalks must be cleared of snow and ice within 24 hours of any accumulation. A Courtesy Notice will be issued at business and private properties that are not in compliance with the ordinances. Owners will have the remainder of the day to clear the sidewalk. If the sidewalk is not cleared when the inspector returns, the City will contract to have the walk cleared and the property owner will be billed for the cost of the work, plus a penalty fee.

Rental Properties: It is the responsibility of the property owner or property manager of a rental property to provide snow removal from sidewalks adjoining a rental property. The owner may either contract with a snow removal company or may require the tenant to clear sidewalks. If you are an owner of a rental property, you should be aware of your responsibility to provide for sidewalk snow removal and see that it is being done. If you are a tenant, you should be aware whether you have assumed that responsibility as part of your rental agreement.

Vacant Lots: Property owners of vacant lots with sidewalks are required to keep the sidewalks clear. In these cases, it is not possible for the sidewalk snow removal inspector to leave a Courtesy Notice. However, that does not relieve the property owner of the responsibility for maintaining a cleared sidewalk.
Absentee Owners: If you own property in Bozeman, but do not live here, you may want to hire a local property manager to see to it that the requirements of sidewalk snow removal are being met.