Stormwater News

Managing High Density Residential Lots

Published Thursday, March 9, 2017

As residents of Warren County, we are very fortunate to be a part of a thriving, progressive and expanding community.  Evidence of this continued development can be seen throughout the county at various construction projects.  The Warren County Department of Building and Electrical Services reported a near record year in regards to permit applications in 2016.  Approximately 950 building permits were applied for during calendar year 2016.  Of those 950 permit applications, 440 were for Single Family Residence structures.  This growth generates many benefits for our citizens.  However, it may also create challenges that must be addressed to ensure successful progress.  Residential construction in areas of high density development is one of the trends becoming more common in Warren County that may require additional attention to stormwater standards.  The following highlights a few key points that contractors, realtors and homeowners can use to improve compliance performance with stormwater regulations:

Perimeter Control

A perimeter control is a Best Management Practice that helps to prevent sediment laden water from leaving a construction site.  A perimeter control can be made of any material so long as the material allows infiltration and discharge of stormwater and filtration of sediment.  The perimeter control itself must also not create adverse environmental effects and/or ponding of water, which could create a flooding concern.  This is the reason for not allowing straw bales to be used for perimeter control.  Typical residential lot perimeter controls include straw wattle, silt fence and adequate vegetative buffers.

Construction Entrance

A properly installed construction entrance creates an area for deliveries and other vehicular traffic to access the site.  It also allows for the cleaning of sediment laden equipment tires and prohibits tracking of sediment onto the roadway.  The size of the aggregate (usually crushed stone) should be large enough to prohibit it being tracked onto the roadway.

Inspection and Maintenance

Routine inspection and maintenance of site conditions should be completed in accordance with approved permit conditions and timeframes.  This timeframe is usually every 7-14 days depending on the permit.  These inspections are especially important after rain events to ensure that onsite controls were not overwhelmed by stormwater or sediment.  Repair and replacement of degraded or damaged controls is essential for continued compliance.

By reviewing and understanding permit requirements and maintaining site conditions, a permittee or responsible party can greatly reduce the potential of having to respond to an enforcement action.  In the event that a permittee does receive an enforcement action document, our inspectors and reviewers are always available to discuss non-compliant site conditions and possible remedial measures.

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