[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Council of the Township of Greenwich 6-18-2007 by Ord. No. 13-2007. Amendments noted where applicable.]
To eliminate issues concerning drainage alteration to adjacent properties upon construction, it is proper to establish a Grading Ordinance for the public welfare and safety of Greenwich Township and its residents.
The requirement set forth herein shall apply to the development of all lots within the Township of Greenwich for residential purposes. For development where an overall grading plan has already been revised and approved by the Planning/Zoning Board, the review and approval of an individual lot grading plan prior to the issuance of a building permit is required. For the purpose of this chapter, the term "development" shall mean the construction, reconstruction or relocation of any residential structure; the enlargement of a residential structure resulting in a land disturbance of 500 square feet or more; the construction or placement of an accessory structure on a residential lot resulting in a land disturbance of 500 square feet or more; and/or construction of an in-ground swimming pool on a residential lot.
The developer of a tract of land in the Township of Greenwich shall provide the following items for each lot proposed to be developed:
Completed lot grading application, copies of which may be obtained from the Township of Greenwich Construction Office;
Five copies of a lot grading plan, signed and sealed by an engineer licensed by the State of New Jersey, and containing all information listed in the lot grading checklist.
Nothing contained herein shall prohibit the Engineer from requiring a new overall grading plan for review and approval. The developer shall be entitled to administrative review, if the plan meets the performance standards contained herein, provided that the proposed changes do not violate or create a conflict with the prior approvals granted by the approving authority. If in the opinion of the Engineer the revised grading plan substantially deviates from the prior approval, the applicant shall be required to seek the approval of the applicable board.
The State of New Jersey, through the Uniform Construction Code, requires that a foundation location survey be submitted to the Township Construction official as soon as possible after the installation of the foundation's wall. Further, the final verification of such a prior approval rests with the Construction Official. This plan shall be prepared by a land surveyor licensed by the State of New Jersey and show all building corners of the foundation. To confirm that the top-of-block elevation conforms to the approved plan, the permittee shall also submit a foundation location plan to the Engineer for review. The foundation location plan shall contain the top-of-block elevation.
Nothing in this section shall prohibit a permittee from commencing with framing prior to the submission of the foundation location plan to the Engineer but will instead be a matter to be resolved by the contractor prior to the issuance of the certificate of occupancy. However, since the permittee shall demonstrate conformance to the performance standards listed below in § 403-7 prior to the issuance of the certificate of occupancy, it is recommended that the foundation location plan be submitted to the Engineer as soon after the installation of the foundation walls as possible but not more than five business days following installation.
A certificate of occupancy shall not be issued until the permittee submits an accurate final survey (as-built plan) to the Engineer for approval. The final survey (as-built plan) shall be prepared by a New Jersey licensed professional land surveyor. The purpose of the final survey (as-built plan) is to ensure that the lot grading is in substantial conformance to the approved plan and that the lot will adequately drain and have no adverse impact on adjoining properties. The final survey (as-built plan) shall be reviewed by the Engineer and determined to comply with the above standards.
All grading shall be done in a manner that will result in a no adverse impact to adjacent properties. Adjacent properties with natural swales and/or wetlands must be evaluated to insure that adequate capacity is available to accept the runoff from the site being developed and graded. Whenever possible, that land shall be graded in one of the following three methods:
The rear yard shall drain overland to the street through side yard swales on either side of the house, located on the common property lines with adjoining lots, and the front yard shall drain directly to the street;
The rear year shall drain and be collected in a system or interior yard inlets and piping designated in accordance with accepted standards, connected to the development's overall stormwater drainage system, and the front yard shall drain directly to the street; or
The rear yard shall drain overland onto adjoining properties only as permitted by right, i.e., no net increase in rate of runoff or manner of flow or via an acceptable easement. The rear yard shall be graded to drain as required in Subsection A above. The front yard shall drain directly to the street.
No more than three lots in a row shall be allowed to drain through a swale unless protected by an acceptable easement. The permittee shall confirm to the Engineer that any approved easement has been conveyed and recorded and that it is not subject or subordinate to any other interest that could extinguish it or otherwise diminish its effectiveness.
The minimum slope for swales, lawns and disturbed areas shall be 2%, and for smooth, hard surfaces, i.e., driveways, 1%.
Slopes shall not be steeper than three horizontal to one vertical.
No grading shall occur within five feet of a property line unless necessary to direct drainage off or onto the property, and then into acceptable drainage facilities. All drainage directed off the property shall conform to the requirements listed in Subsection A above.
The maximum grade for driveways shall be 10%.
The top-of-block elevation shall be a minimum of eight inches above the highest adjacent grade and shall be provided on all grading plans. The notation of the finished floor alone is not acceptable.
Grading within 10 feet of the dwelling shall be in accordance with local building codes.
Retaining walls over three feet in height must be designed and then reviewed and approved by the Engineer.
Topsoil moved during the course of construction shall be redistributed so as to provide at least five inches of spread cover to all seeded and planted areas of the development and shall be stabilized by seeding or planting. Topsoil shall be reasonably free of stone and contain no stones larger than two inches in any dimension. In the event that the quantity of topsoil at the site is insufficient to provide five inches of cover for all seeded an planted areas, the permittee shall provide and distribute a sufficient quantity of topsoil to provide such cover. The composition of any borrowed topsoil shall be in accordance with New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) standards and suitable for use in a residential setting.
Grading necessary to construct an in-ground swimming pool shall not interrupt the existing and/or approved drainage patterns. Finished deck elevations shall be set above the natural grade occurring on the lot to prevent water from flowing into the swimming pool.
The permittee may request a waiver of a particular performance standard upon presentation of a reasonable justification. The Engineer shall have the authority to review the request and issue an administrative change, provided it does not violate the intent of this chapter.
Where a performance bond and inspection escrow have already been or will be established, the requirements relating to the posting of the fees may be waived upon written request of the applicant for billing to be applied to the escrow account. In those instances, a separate line item for lot grading shall be included in the performance bond estimate and the inspection escrow deposit shall be calculated per the Municipal Land Use Law (Chapter 291, Laws of N.J. 1975, N.J.S.A. 40:55D-1 et seq.). The performance bond estimate for lot grading shall be calculated at a rate of $1,500 per lot. The bonding for lot grading shall not convert over to any subsequent maintenance bond.
All conditions and requirement herein shall be consistent with the New Jersey Stormwater Best Management Practices.
[Amended 9-4-2007 by Ord. No. 16-2007]
The following fees are required for the Township application, review and inspection of the site:
Application fee: $35.
A flat fee of $300 per lot shall be paid at the time of submission of a grading plan and a sum of $100 in the event upon submission of any revised grading plan. These fees are flat fees and constitute the actual fee charged to the Township of Greenwich by its Engineer for review of the plan.
Inspection fees. A flat inspection fee of $200 per lot shall be submitted by the applicant to be utilized for the payment of the Township Engineer's inspection of the site.
Reinspection fee. A flat fee of $100 per lot shall be paid to the Township for any reinspection of a grading plan in the event the initial inspection should reveal any errors/omissions or construction not in accordance with the filed plan. Each reinspection shall be charged at the flat rate of $100 and shall be paid at the time of the request for any reinspection.
No certificate of occupancy shall be issued until the grading plan has been submitted and approved as built.
All fees shall be paid to the Chief Financial Officer of the Township of Greenwich.