Paver installation cost

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dstring
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Paver installation cost

Post by dstring »

I recently got 3 estimates to have some pavers installed and the cost is more than I expected.

Project
Remove 200 sq. ft. of existing gravel walkway. Replace with pavers.
Remove 125 sq. ft. of existing concrete patio (severely cracked). Replace with pavers.
Resurface concrete steps/landing (front porch) with thin pavers to match walkways and patio.

The site has very easy access, soft digging. The project is all straight edges, no curves or fancy patterns.

Estimates from 3 different contractors were all around 10k. Seems high to me but what do you think?
mervinj7
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by mervinj7 »

dstring wrote: Fri Jul 10, 2020 6:52 pm I recently got 3 estimates to have some pavers installed and the cost is more than I expected.

Project
Remove 200 sq. ft. of existing gravel walkway. Replace with pavers.
Remove 125 sq. ft. of existing concrete patio (severely cracked). Replace with pavers.
Resurface concrete steps/landing (front porch) with thin pavers to match walkways and patio.

The site has very easy access, soft digging. The project is all straight edges, no curves or fancy patterns.

Estimates from 3 different contractors were all around 10k. Seems high to me but what do you think?
We just got a quote for a 1200 sq ft driveway and two porches for a total of $30k. Yours seems in the right ball park but then again I live in the Bay Area.
adamthesmythe
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by adamthesmythe »

Seems a little high but

looks like you have a minimum-size job, maybe if you were doing more it would cost not much more

pavers done right will cost more than just concrete

you could probably find someone who will do a cheap (bad) job of pavers for less.
inbox788
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by inbox788 »

dstring wrote: Fri Jul 10, 2020 6:52 pm I recently got 3 estimates to have some pavers installed and the cost is more than I expected.

Project
Remove 200 sq. ft. of existing gravel walkway. Replace with pavers.
Remove 125 sq. ft. of existing concrete patio (severely cracked). Replace with pavers.
Resurface concrete steps/landing (front porch) with thin pavers to match walkways and patio.

The site has very easy access, soft digging. The project is all straight edges, no curves or fancy patterns.

Estimates from 3 different contractors were all around 10k. Seems high to me but what do you think?
What city? Labor rates and demand make a big difference.

How long it takes is just as important. Is this a 1 man crew for 4 weeks or a 4 man crew for 1 week?

Have you looked into concrete stamping or compared costs?
shelanman
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by shelanman »

I am currently in the process of having a 450 sq ft patio built out of pavers (teardown of a raised planter and concrete were required)

I paid about $13000 in total for the project, and I did not choose a super premium paving stone. (Angelus Courtyard)

The project is almost complete, and will end up at about 3.5 days of work for a 5-person crew.

Day 0-1: demolish old hardscape
Day 2: create paver bed and lay out pavers that didn't need cuts
Day 3: lay borders and cut pavers at edges of border

edit: My 450 sq ft. includes a moderate amount of cuts -- I have a couple of corners they are going around, and they're using two different sets of stones with a border between them (producing extra cuts).
Last edited by shelanman on Fri Jul 10, 2020 10:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
ElJefeDelQueso
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by ElJefeDelQueso »

dstring wrote: Fri Jul 10, 2020 6:52 pm I recently got 3 estimates to have some pavers installed and the cost is more than I expected.

Project
Remove 200 sq. ft. of existing gravel walkway. Replace with pavers.
Remove 125 sq. ft. of existing concrete patio (severely cracked). Replace with pavers.
Resurface concrete steps/landing (front porch) with thin pavers to match walkways and patio.

The site has very easy access, soft digging. The project is all straight edges, no curves or fancy patterns.

Estimates from 3 different contractors were all around 10k. Seems high to me but what do you think?
In my area in the NW, paver installs including decent Belgard pavers are running $14/sq ft. Higher priced pavers (eg Calarc) obviously cost more.
meebers
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by meebers »

I paid $5/sf. 1$/sf was for tearing up the concrete driveway and sidewalk and hauling it away. the remainder was for the cost of pavers and installation, which included crushed concrete for foundation, sand to fill in the cracks, concrete edges etc.
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cheese_breath
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by cheese_breath »

dstring wrote: Fri Jul 10, 2020 6:52 pm Estimates from 3 different contractors were all around 10k. Seems high to me but what do you think?
I think three estimates is enough.
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3feetpete
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by 3feetpete »

If you got three prices and they are all in the same ballpark then that is the fair price. You can get more prices from equally qualified contractors and maybe do a little better. Another thing you can do is discuss the price with the three and see if there are any changes you can make to save money. One might be to do it in a different time of the year when he isn't so busy.
kevster
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by kevster »

I have no opinions on your estimates but unless you've had a paver patio before I would caution you to be aware of the ongoing maintenance. They look beautiful newly installed but I would never get one again. Constant weed killing is required and over the years parts of the patio and individual bricks will shift and sink even with professionally installed gravel beds. My neighbor had their driveway replaced with pavers and several years later it has tire ruts where the cars park and drive on.
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cheese_breath
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by cheese_breath »

kevster wrote: Sat Jul 11, 2020 12:38 pm I have no opinions on your estimates but unless you've had a paver patio before I would caution you to be aware of the ongoing maintenance. They look beautiful newly installed but I would never get one again. Constant weed killing is required and over the years parts of the patio and individual bricks will shift and sink even with professionally installed gravel beds. My neighbor had their driveway replaced with pavers and several years later it has tire ruts where the cars park and drive on.
And don't forget about resealing them if you want to keep that brand new look.
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SwampDonkey
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by SwampDonkey »

I ended up DIY'ing a paver patio but prior to the DIY I had a guy provide a bid - he said all-in costs were likely in the $7-9/ sq ft range. This is in central FL for reference.
kevinf
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by kevinf »

kevster wrote: Sat Jul 11, 2020 12:38 pm I have no opinions on your estimates but unless you've had a paver patio before I would caution you to be aware of the ongoing maintenance. They look beautiful newly installed but I would never get one again. Constant weed killing is required and over the years parts of the patio and individual bricks will shift and sink even with professionally installed gravel beds. My neighbor had their driveway replaced with pavers and several years later it has tire ruts where the cars park and drive on.
These are signs of an incorrectly installed paver project. Simply paying lots of money doesn't guarantee results, unfortunately.

Paver bases are multiple layers, and quite deep. There should be more than just crushed gravel as underlayment.

The first (deepest) base is compacted soil overlayed by landscaping fabric, the second base is compacted and leveled sand, the third base is compacted gravel, the fourth is more compacted sand, the fifth base is a manufactured paver baseboard (this prevents individual pavers from sinking as each baseboard sits under about 6 pavers). Edging along the perimeter needs to be installed to prevent shifting over time. Then there needs to be proper drainage to prevent frost heave in northern climates, this may require a french drain or other buried drainage system.

Once the pavers are set, a polymeric joint compound (a type of mortar) will lock the pavers in place and will not allow weeds to grow in the joints if they are kept clean.

There is a ton of labor involved, and most of it is done by hand. Expect prices to reflect this.
Last edited by kevinf on Sun Jul 12, 2020 1:16 am, edited 6 times in total.
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celia
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by celia »

We have a cement slab under the patio. The edging bricks (in a large curve) are cemented down, but the rest of the bricks are loose but were set close together tightly so there aren't many weeds. Brushed a ton of "fine" sand into the cracks when it was installed 40 years ago. It has remained in fairly good shape except some bricks are now lifting up due to tree roots growing between the slab and the bricks. (I haven't yet investigated how they entered.)

As there are usually a lot of potted plants that get watered frequently on the patio, the water needs somewhere to go. You should plan for that, especially if it rains a lot.
dstring wrote: Fri Jul 10, 2020 6:52 pm Resurface concrete steps/landing (front porch) with thin pavers to match walkways and patio.
Are you really "resurfacing" this or removing and replacing the outer pavers? You likely want the final height and step heights to remain the same. It seems like it would be less costly and save some money if you use full pavers for the porch area instead of thinner pavers that are more likely to crack. You should save money by using more of the pavers you are already buying instead of getting a small batch of thin ones.
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cheese_breath
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by cheese_breath »

kevinf wrote: Sun Jul 12, 2020 12:24 am
kevster wrote: Sat Jul 11, 2020 12:38 pm I have no opinions on your estimates but unless you've had a paver patio before I would caution you to be aware of the ongoing maintenance. They look beautiful newly installed but I would never get one again. Constant weed killing is required and over the years parts of the patio and individual bricks will shift and sink even with professionally installed gravel beds. My neighbor had their driveway replaced with pavers and several years later it has tire ruts where the cars park and drive on.
These are signs of an incorrectly installed paver project. Simply paying lots of money doesn't guarantee results, unfortunately.

Paver bases are multiple layers, and quite deep. There should be more than just crushed gravel as underlayment.

The first (deepest) base is compacted soil, the second base is compacted and leveled sand, the third base is compacted gravel, the fourth is more compacted sand, the fifth base is a manufactured paver baseboard (this prevents individual pavers from sinking as each baseboard sits under about 6 pavers). Edging along the perimeter needs to be installed to prevent shifting over time. Then there needs to be proper drainage to prevent frost heave in northern climates, this may require a french drain or other buried drainage system.

Once the pavers are set, a polymeric joint compound (a type of mortar) will lock the pavers in place and will not allow weeds to grow in the joints if they are kept clean.

There is a ton of labor involved, and most of it is done by hand. Expect prices to reflect this.
They've certainly improved the process since I had my patio done in 1992. It was more on the order of what keyster described... slag sand, gravel and the bricks. Sand the bricks a couple times, seal them, and the job was done. And as the sealer wore down, start pulling weeds and scraping moss out from between the bricks.
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littlebird
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by littlebird »

meebers wrote: Fri Jul 10, 2020 8:44 pm I paid $5/sf. 1$/sf was for tearing up the concrete driveway and sidewalk and hauling it away. the remainder was for the cost of pavers and installation, which included crushed concrete for foundation, sand to fill in the cracks, concrete edges etc.
I paid $5/sq.ft recently also, for very pedestrian grey pavers. It was a utilitarian, rather than aesthetic project.
kevinf
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by kevinf »

cheese_breath wrote: Sun Jul 12, 2020 12:50 am They've certainly improved the process since I had my patio done in 1992. It was more on the order of what keyster described... slag sand, gravel and the bricks. Sand the bricks a couple times, seal them, and the job was done. And as the sealer wore down, start pulling weeds and scraping moss out from between the bricks.
Several years ago, I did a paver project as I outlined above by myself, which includes a parking area. I have had no weeds, no sinking pavers, and no moss... I live in a northern climate as well. :beer

Pouring concrete or asphalt paving is far easier for hire. Pavers are labor intensive, but don't require particularly specialized equipment or materials, so it is a project that can be done by yourself. They certainly look better than plain concrete and asphalt... just make sure they're done properly if you outsource.
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Re: Paver installation cost

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This topic is now in the Personal Consumer Issues forum.
Topic Author
dstring
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by dstring »

OP here. Thanks for your comments and input everyone.

A few of you said you paid $5 -$15 sq. ft. I was expecting the cost to be around $15 sq. ft. but my estimates were around $26 sq. ft. I guess that's the going rate in my area at this time. And yes, 3 estimates from reputable contractors should be enough :happy

There is another layer to this project that I didn't mention in the original posting that perhaps someone could comment on. The rock walkways I'd like to replace pass within 4-5 feet of a sweet gum/liquid ambar tree (known for aggressive roots). I was thinking pavers would be a better option than concrete because they can be releveled if/when the roots push them up, whereas concrete will likely crack/shift and may need to be replaced.

The estimates for rebar reinforced plain concrete were about 40% less than pavers and I would be fine with the look of concrete and reduced maintenance aspect. It's mainly the tree root issue that has me considering pavers.

Would pavers really be a better option than concrete in this case? Is there a way to install the concrete to minimize future cracking/shifting? Has anyone used rigid plastic root guard material to protect adjacent concrete from tree root damage?

Thanks.
daheld
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by daheld »

dstring wrote: Sun Jul 12, 2020 3:18 pm OP here. Thanks for your comments and input everyone.

A few of you said you paid $5 -$15 sq. ft. I was expecting the cost to be around $15 sq. ft. but my estimates were around $26 sq. ft. I guess that's the going rate in my area at this time. And yes, 3 estimates from reputable contractors should be enough :happy

There is another layer to this project that I didn't mention in the original posting that perhaps someone could comment on. The rock walkways I'd like to replace pass within 4-5 feet of a sweet gum/liquid ambar tree (known for aggressive roots). I was thinking pavers would be a better option than concrete because they can be releveled if/when the roots push them up, whereas concrete will likely crack/shift and may need to be replaced.

The estimates for rebar reinforced plain concrete were about 40% less than pavers and I would be fine with the look of concrete and reduced maintenance aspect. It's mainly the tree root issue that has me considering pavers.

Would pavers really be a better option than concrete in this case? Is there a way to install the concrete to minimize future cracking/shifting? Has anyone used rigid plastic root guard material to protect adjacent concrete from tree root damage?

Thanks.
I'd seriously consider cutting the tree down and doing concrete. Those trees are such a pain for so many reasons. We have one that's probably 25 feet tall in our front yard. It's roots are getting in to our sewer lateral and the gumballs are a pain to pick up and a liability that makes the sidewalk hazardous. I want to cut it down so badly, and probably will at some point.
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ResearchMed
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by ResearchMed »

daheld wrote: Mon Jul 13, 2020 10:23 am
dstring wrote: Sun Jul 12, 2020 3:18 pm OP here. Thanks for your comments and input everyone.

A few of you said you paid $5 -$15 sq. ft. I was expecting the cost to be around $15 sq. ft. but my estimates were around $26 sq. ft. I guess that's the going rate in my area at this time. And yes, 3 estimates from reputable contractors should be enough :happy

There is another layer to this project that I didn't mention in the original posting that perhaps someone could comment on. The rock walkways I'd like to replace pass within 4-5 feet of a sweet gum/liquid ambar tree (known for aggressive roots). I was thinking pavers would be a better option than concrete because they can be releveled if/when the roots push them up, whereas concrete will likely crack/shift and may need to be replaced.

The estimates for rebar reinforced plain concrete were about 40% less than pavers and I would be fine with the look of concrete and reduced maintenance aspect. It's mainly the tree root issue that has me considering pavers.

Would pavers really be a better option than concrete in this case? Is there a way to install the concrete to minimize future cracking/shifting? Has anyone used rigid plastic root guard material to protect adjacent concrete from tree root damage?

Thanks.
I'd seriously consider cutting the tree down and doing concrete. Those trees are such a pain for so many reasons. We have one that's probably 25 feet tall in our front yard. It's roots are getting in to our sewer lateral and the gumballs are a pain to pick up and a liability that makes the sidewalk hazardous. I want to cut it down so badly, and probably will at some point.
When we redid our semi-circular driveway (relatively big job) with pavers in our new (antiques) home, we also had a tree whose roots were already interfering with the sewer line. It would have interfered with the driveway soon...
We hated to remove a living tree, but it wasn't particularly healthy (or aesthetically appealing).
So we special ordered a large (already good size) cherry tree and had it trucked in, and positioned away from the sewer line and the driveway, after the existing tree was gone.
We would *not* have been happy if those roots had started to affect the new pavers, but the sewer line was enough of a problem that needed addressing anyway.

As for whether concrete would even make sense if the tree remains, the only thing I could think of would be to have the concrete in several shorter segments, totally separate from each other, in the area of the tree, so IF any cracks develop, it might be easier to replace...?
(Note: It may be obvious that I have no experience concrete installation.)

BTW, we absolutely love the look of the pavers. We have an old house, so we got "old-looking" pavers, and it really matched the house well. There were real cobblestones edging the existing gravel (grrrrr), and we saved those so they now edge the paver driveway.

Having watched the detail of the work as it was done, the layers of bedding, the leveling, etc., it was much easier to understand the price, which initially really caught us by surprise, too.
That was about 17 years ago, and it still looks wonderful.
The one real trick was finding someone to plow the snow, someone who would not destroy the pavers. That was easier said than done.

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alfaspider
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by alfaspider »

I did a partial replacement of my driveway with pavers for about $10 sq/ft (Texas). The driveway runs too close to a large tree which I didn't want to cut down or eliminate, and I wanted something that could be repaired in pieces as the tree will inevitably cause damage in the future as it grows. There's already some minor rutting in some spots, but no issues with weed intrusion.

I think pavers are probably a better option for patios and walkways than driveways, but it is an expensive process. The modern developed world is one where goods are cheap but labor is expensive.
atikovi
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by atikovi »

shelanman wrote: Fri Jul 10, 2020 7:38 pm I am currently in the process of having a 450 sq ft patio built out of pavers (teardown of a raised planter and concrete were required)

I paid about $13000 in total for the project, and I did not choose a super premium paving stone. (Angelus Courtyard)

The project is almost complete, and will end up at about 3.5 days of work for a 5-person crew.
3.5 days x 8 hours = 28 hours x 5 men = 140 man hours. Can't imagine laborers make over $20/hour so that's $2,800 labor. Figure $2,000 for the pavers and stone underneath and that's a hell of a profit for the contractor at $13,000.
johnnyc321
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by johnnyc321 »

Our pool deck paver project last year was $5.00/sqft for the deck (1,366 sqft) and $15.00/ft (111 feet) for the pool coping.

Total project was $8,915.00 with 56 feet of "deco drain" that cost $420.00.

This is in Florida.
shelanman
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by shelanman »

atikovi wrote: Mon Jul 13, 2020 3:32 pm
shelanman wrote: Fri Jul 10, 2020 7:38 pm I am currently in the process of having a 450 sq ft patio built out of pavers (teardown of a raised planter and concrete were required)

I paid about $13000 in total for the project, and I did not choose a super premium paving stone. (Angelus Courtyard)

The project is almost complete, and will end up at about 3.5 days of work for a 5-person crew.
3.5 days x 8 hours = 28 hours x 5 men = 140 man hours. Can't imagine laborers make over $20/hour so that's $2,800 labor. Figure $2,000 for the pavers and stone underneath and that's a hell of a profit for the contractor at $13,000.
They worked more than 8 hour days, so more like 160 hours than 140 hours, but you might be right, the contractor might have made a ton of money off of me.

I got two quotes for the project, and they were similar. I went with the more expensive of the two, but they were less than $1k apart, and I liked these folks better.
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lthenderson
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by lthenderson »

dstring wrote: Sun Jul 12, 2020 3:18 pm There is another layer to this project that I didn't mention in the original posting that perhaps someone could comment on. The rock walkways I'd like to replace pass within 4-5 feet of a sweet gum/liquid ambar tree (known for aggressive roots). I was thinking pavers would be a better option than concrete because they can be releveled if/when the roots push them up, whereas concrete will likely crack/shift and may need to be replaced.
The only way to re-level the pavers is to remove the offending roots which depending on how big and near the trunk they are can be hard on the tree stunting if not killing it. If my plan was for less maintenance in the future, I would remove the tree and use concrete instead of pavers for reasons already mentioned in this thread. If you like the texture of pavers, consider stamped concrete.
Monsterflockster
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by Monsterflockster »

adamthesmythe wrote: Fri Jul 10, 2020 7:14 pm Seems a little high but

looks like you have a minimum-size job, maybe if you were doing more it would cost not much more

pavers done right will cost more than just concrete

you could probably find someone who will do a cheap (bad) job of pavers for less.
This. You’re not getting any deals for small-ish jobs. The profit margin is next to nothing, most do it to keep their guys working.
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gwe67
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Re: Paver installation cost

Post by gwe67 »

lthenderson wrote: Mon Jul 13, 2020 4:12 pm
dstring wrote: Sun Jul 12, 2020 3:18 pm There is another layer to this project that I didn't mention in the original posting that perhaps someone could comment on. The rock walkways I'd like to replace pass within 4-5 feet of a sweet gum/liquid ambar tree (known for aggressive roots). I was thinking pavers would be a better option than concrete because they can be releveled if/when the roots push them up, whereas concrete will likely crack/shift and may need to be replaced.
The only way to re-level the pavers is to remove the offending roots which depending on how big and near the trunk they are can be hard on the tree stunting if not killing it. If my plan was for less maintenance in the future, I would remove the tree and use concrete instead of pavers for reasons already mentioned in this thread. If you like the texture of pavers, consider stamped concrete.
You would need to remove the tree roots and install a root barrier in a trench along the edge of the pavers.
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