Getting our driveway completed.....

My wife and I have been building a stone and wood summer home in Asheville for the last three years. The look and feel of the home is "mountain lodge." We have been thinking about the driveway choices for most of that time. The home is 98% complete and we will move into it on May 1.

The home is located on a 5 acre parcel (not in a gated community) but is gated. The driveway which is 10,000 feet long, has a grade between 5% and 25%. The construction driveway was made from gravel and asphalt but will not be retained.

We have settled on a driveway of exposed aggregate with stone expansion joints. The rough surface is attractive to us for two reasons: it fits in with the general mountain look and feel and will provide additional traction desirable on the steeper sections.

We just received out certificate of occupancy and want to move in on April 15, after we complete the driveway.

Along the way, our builder became insolvent and we had to complete the project ourselves.

Here is our two part question:

(1) What is a fair per square foot price to construct the driveway (I have described) including demolition of the asphalt sections remaining from the construction process, and

(2) Can you recommend two contractors in Asheville with specific experience with the type of driveway we desire? And if not, what procedure would you recommend we use in locating a good contractor with a fair price?


Hopefully, I can give you some guidance on how to go about hiring a contractor for your driveway. Unfortunately, I do not know a concrete contractor in Asheville, NC. I have contacted someone I work with here to see if he knows anyone in your area. If I get some names, I will pass them on to you.

The demolition, hauling and dumping of your existing driveway is a cost that is hard for me to figure exactly. What the demolition contractor is going to consider is what equipment it will take to do the job, how long it will take to do it and how many loads needs to go to the land fill. Here in Richmond, VA, we have dump fees that have to be figured into the job as well. I recommend getting at least two prices because you may see quite a difference between prices for this part of your job. I always use someone I have used before and be sure to check references. This is good advice for both phases of your job. The Better Business Bureau is a good place to start to find reputable contractors. You may find that a demolition contractor will give you a better price for this phase of the work than the concrete contractor. I always get the concrete contractor to install the base of the driveway because the base is going to determine the strength of the driveway. By handling the job in this manner, you are assuring that the concrete contractor is completely responsible for the success of the driveway.

You are presenting a large job to a concrete contractor for a residence. The square foot price should be the best price available because of this quantity of concrete. The stone expansion joint is going to add cost too. The type of stone and the amount used is a cost that should be itemized for you. Based on the costs of some of my jobs, you may get a price in the $4-$5.00 per foot range for the concrete.

I hope this information helps! Thanks for submitting your question.


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