Can I Build Over A Public Sewer In My Garden

Can I Build Over a Public Sewer In My Garden?

It is a common question whether it is possible to build over a public sewer in a garden. Generally, the answer is no, as it is illegal to build over a public sewer without permission from the local authority.

What is a Public Sewer?

A public sewer is an underground system of pipes that are used to transport wastewater, stormwater and sewage. These systems are typically owned and maintained by a local government or other public agency.

Why You Can’t Build Over a Public Sewer

There are a few reasons why you cannot build over a public sewer:

  • Damage to the Sewer Line: A large structure placed over a sewer line may damage the pipes or cause blockages due to the weight of the structure.
  • Environmental Health Hazards: Sewage and wastewater contain disease-causing bacteria, fungi, and viruses that can cause health problems if exposed to the air.
  • Safety: A structure over a sewer line puts people at risk of falling in or becoming exposed to sewage.

Getting Permission

In some cases, it may be possible to get permission from the local authority to build over a public sewer. To get permission, you will need to provide proof that the proposed building will not damage the sewer line or pose any health or safety risks. The local authority may also require that a survey of the sewer line be conducted to identify any potential problems prior to building.


In conclusion, it is generally illegal to build over a public sewer without permission from the local authority. If permission is granted, it is important to ensure that there are no damage to the sewer line or health or safety risks posed by the proposed structure.

Can I Build Over A Public Sewer In My Garden?

The simple answer to this question is generally, no. Building over a public sewer is never a recommended option, as there could be a number of legal and health implications. Before you make any decisions about building over a public sewer, it’s important to understand why it is discouraged.

Legal Implications

The main reason building over a public sewer is illegal is because it’s a violation of the sewer easement. A sewer easement grants the government or the local sewer authority access to the property and the public sewer running through the property. This is important for the public sewer system to be maintained or repaired.

Health And Safety Risks

If the public sewer line were to burst or overflow, any structure built over it could be damaged or destroyed. Additionally, wastewater can contain a multitude of noxious gases, making it hazardous to your health.

What Can You Do?

Here are a few tips if you plan on making any changes to your garden that involve a public sewer line.

  • Check with your local governing bodies: Before you make any changes, check to see if there are any laws or regulations you need to know about.
  • Check with the local sewer authority:Discuss your plans with the local sewer authority before making any changes. They may be able to offer advice or other alternatives.
  • Hire a professional contractor: It’s important to hire a professional who has experience dealing with public sewers and knows the local regulations.
  • Be aware of any potential risks: Understand the potential risks involved when making any changes to a public sewer line and be prepared to deal with them.

In conclusion, it’s not generally recommended that you build over a public sewer in your garden. There could be legal, health and safety risks, so it’s important to be aware of them before making any changes. It’s best to check with the local governing bodies and the local sewer authority, and to hire a professional contractor if you plan to make any changes.