i have a single, large front concrete step. i have patio stones that have 2 levels down to the driveway, but the stones need to be redone. i want to remove the 2 levels, and pour a concrete lower step, and then run the patio stones to the driveway. the size of the lower step would be approximately, 7'8 wide, 2' deep, 6" high. my questions:
1. do i need a building inspector for this?
2. once you build the form, do i use fill (gravel, broken stones, cement blocks) or do i fill it all with concrete?
No idea about the building inspector. If you are going to pour concrete, it is always recommended that the substrate be SOLID below it, or wider. That usually means removing dirt for several inches to a foot or more, filling in w/ gravel that will compact, and compacting in 4" lifts (fill 4", compact, fill more, etc). Whether you need 4" or 8" or 12" of compacted gravel, I don't know; if in doubt, go heavy and compact well. Check w/ your local building department. You may also need to compact beyond where the concrete will go, (wider) depending on how squishy your soil is. Once the substrate is suitable, 4" of concrete w/ mesh ought to be there for many moons. This may be overkill, but a sidewalk that tips in 5 years sucks. john