Walks and driveways are features which should be built with a view to permanency. The first cost of a properly constructed walk or road should not be considered prohibitive unless equal consideration be given to the expense of maintaining a poorly constructed one.
Main walks should not be less than four feet six inches wide, and where a great expanse of ground makes it consistent with a proportionate entrance they may be five or six feet.
Cement makes a good, permanent material for walks (Figs. 40 and 41) and eliminates further upkeep, care and expense. It will outlast any other walk material with the exception of North River flagstone. For heavy soils a foundation of cinders eighteen inches deep is recommended. This may be reduced to six inches or omitted altogether on light and sandy soils. Three inches of concrete and one inch of cement finish make a durable walk. A three-quarter inch expansion joint should be provided every twenty to twenty-five feet. This should extend through the concrete base as well as the cement surface. The joint may be filled with asphalt or sand (Fig. 42). Cement walks have very little to recommend them from an esthetic point of view. The surface is glaring in Summer and slippery in Winter. If the top is roughened with a coarse broom when put down the surface will be more pleasing than the customary smooth finish with small and regular indentations made with a roughened roller. A cement walk with roughened surface should have a smooth margin two inches wide on each side.
The glare from cement walks may be reduced by tinting the surface coat with mortar stain. The stain should be used in small quantities, and only the very best make, care being taken when mixing to have the color thoroughly worked through the mass, otherwise it injures the quality of the cement. On an inclined walk it is advisable to have alternate lines of rough and smooth surface running at right angles to the side of the walk. The roughened strips should be three inches wide and the smooth strips two inches wide.
The use of cement has become so universal that it is really monotonous and, when possible, a material should be used that is more in tune with the natural surroundings.
Well kept macadam walks (Fig. 43) require more care than cement walks, but are a little more pleasing on a lawn. Use three inches of two and one-half inch stone, two inches of one and one-half inch stone, and one inch of breaker dust. Wet thoroughly and roll to a hard and even surface. Quarry spawls may be used for the two and one-half inch stone if securable near at hand; this would materially reduce the cost. Such walks cost about seventy cents per square yard under favorable conditions. A macadam walk is more satisfactory from a landscape point of view than cement. On properties where steep grades are encountered provision must be made for proper drainage, else the cost of maintenance will be prohibitive. Gutters and catch basins should be installed at intervals. Macadam walks should have a crown of one-half inch to the foot.