Right of Way Information

Engineering Right of WayWhat is the Right of Way?
Right of way is defined as an area of land dedicated for public or private infrastructure, such as streets, sidewalks, sewer lines, water lines, electric lines, and gas lines. Public right of way is a form of easement typically dedicated to the City during subdivision for public use.

Where is the Right of Way?
The right of way varies in Dallas, but a general rule of thumb is that it typically starts from five to seven feet behind the sidewalk on one side of the street to five to seven feet behind the sidewalk on the other side of the street. If you are unsure of the location of the right of way, contact the Public Works Department at 503.831.3562.

Who Is Responsible for Maintenance Within the Right of Way?
  • Yard and Sidewalk Right of Way Maintenance
    • For homes or businesses, the property owner is responsible for maintenance to the curb of the street or the edge of the pavement along their street frontage.
  • Street Right of Way Maintenance
    • If it is a City street, the Public Works Department is responsible for necessary maintenance or repairs.
    • For state streets, ODOT is responsible for maintenance or repairs. Contact ODOT at 888.275.6368 if needed.
  • Power lines and poles are maintained by your power company; however, if you notice a street light out, you can call the City of Dallas Public Works Department at 503.831.3562 and they can report it to PP & L. If possible, please have the location of the street light, nearest street address and cross street, and the number on the street light pole available when you call.
What Is Allowed in the Right of Way?
  • No buildings or permanent structures can encroach on the right of way.
  • No fences or retaining walls shall be constructed within the right of way unless a permit to place a structure in the right of way has been approved. There is a $200 fee associated with this permit. Depending on the height of the structure, you may also be required to record an agreement with the county.
  • Removal of any trees within the right of way requires a $100 tree removal permit, which can be obtained in the Community Development Department.
  • Permits must also be obtained for the planting of trees in the right of way. The City has a list of trees that have been approved for planting in the right of way, as well as planting specifications.
  • Please call our Public Works Department at 503.831.3562 if you have questions.