Township of Edison, NJ
Middlesex County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
Editor's Note: See also Chapter 33, Flood Damage Prevention and Protection.
[1999 Code § 15.40.010, A]
The purposes of this section are:
a. 
To implement the land use rules and regulations to preserve and protect stream banks and adjacent areas of streams, either natural or man-made that are not currently delineated by the State of New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection.
b. 
To discourage construction and re-grading in flood hazard areas.
c. 
To prevent encroachments into flood hazard areas which would obstruct or constrict the area through which water must pass.
d. 
To prevent pollution of watercourses during low- or high-water periods by preventing the placing or storing of unsanitary or dangerous substances in the flood hazard areas.
[1999 Code § 15.40.010, B]
As used in this section:
FLOODWAY
Means the channel and portions of the flood plain adjoining the channel which are reasonably required to carry and discharge the regulatory flood.
FLOOD FRINGE
Means that portion of the flood plain outside the floodway or encroachment lines.
FLOOD PLAIN
Means the area inundated by the regulatory flood including the watercourse that creates it.
REGULATORY FLOOD
Means the 100-year flood along non-delineated watercourses for which this section applies.
[1999 Code § 15.40.010, C]
The flood hazard design elevation shall be determined on an individual basis based upon stream encroachment line data from the Department of Environmental Protection or, in the absence of that data, the flood elevation based on a one-hundred-year storm frequency. Either shall be delineated on a development plan, site plan or other document depicting proposed improvements. In addition, the Municipal Engineer may, upon request of and at the expense of the applicant or at the request of the approving authority and with the consent of the landowner and at the applicant's expense, determine the precise location of a floodway and flood fringe area by close inspection, field survey or other appropriate method and cause the same to be marked on the ground and on the plan, notifying the owner, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, Department of Environmental Protection and the approving authority. The assistance of the United States Department of Agriculture, Soil Conservation Service, and the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, may be sought to aid in delineating the flood hazard design elevation, except that where State or Federal agencies shall subsequently publish any reports which delineate the flood hazard design elevation of a watercourse, said report shall be the officially delineated flood hazard area as if said report were published in this section.
[1999 Code § 15.40.010, D]
Any lot containing a floodway portion of a drainage course and on which it is proposed to re-grade and to construct an improvement shall not be permitted unless a floodway permit has been issued by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, where required by State regulations.
[1999 Code § 15.40.010, E]
Any lot containing a flood fringe portion of the flood hazard area and on which it is proposed to re-grade and/or construct an improvement shall not be permitted unless the proposed use is permitted by the Code of the Township of Edison and until plan approval has been granted by the Division of Engineering.
[1999 Code § 15.40.010, F]
The procedure for reviewing any proposed re-grading and/or construction shall be by submittal to the Division of Engineering for review and approval. No application shall be approved and no building permit granted if there are zoning violations or a variance is required.
[1999 Code § 15.40.010, G]
a. 
Permitted uses in a flood fringe portion of the flood hazard area shall be restricted to the following, provided they are permitted uses in the district in which the flood fringe portion is located:
1. 
Agriculture: general farming, pasture, grazing, outdoor plant nurseries, horticulture, viticulture, truck farming, forestry, sod farming and wild crop harvesting.
2. 
Industrial-commercial: yards, loading areas and parking areas.
3. 
Recreation: golf courses, improved courts and playing fields, swimming areas, boat launching ramps, picnic and camping, and open space uses such as hiking trails.
4. 
Residential: lawns, gardens, parking areas and play areas.
b. 
Non-permitted uses shall include, but not be limited to above-ground and in-ground swimming pools, sheds, fences at ground level, as well as prohibited uses contained in N.J.A.C. 7:13-2.2.
[1999 Code § 15.40.010, H, I]
a. 
The applicant shall submit maps, reports and other appropriate documents permitting the approving authority to evaluate whether the proposal has an inherent low flood damage potential; does not obstruct flood flows or increase flood heights and/or velocities; does not affect adversely the water-carrying capacity of any delineated or non-delineated floodway and/or channel; does not increase local runoff and erosion; does not unduly stress the natural environment of the floodplain or degrade the quality of surface water or the quality of groundwaters; does not require channel modification or relocation; does not require fill or the erection of structures; and does not include the storage of equipment and materials.
b. 
Upon reviewing the application, hearing the applicant's representation and reviewing comments received from other municipal agencies to which the application was forwarded for comment, the approving authority shall deny, approve subject to conditions, or approve the application. Its conclusion shall be based on findings related to the above criteria.
[1999 Code § 15.40.020]
All lots being filled shall be filled with clean fill and/or topsoil in such a manner as to allow complete surface draining of the lot into local storm sewer systems or natural drainage rights-of-way.
[1999 Code § 15.40.030]
a. 
No structure shall be built within one hundred (100) feet of the top of the bank of any stream, open or partially piped, or other body of water or within any drainage or conservation easement, and no fence shall be constructed on a conservation easement. No building shall be constructed within the one-hundred-year floodplain of any stream or watercourse, or on land subject to periodic overflow, or on land which has a water table within two (2) feet from the bottom of the structure's lowest footing or slab, whichever is lowest.
b. 
Existing natural features, such as trees, shrubs, brooks, drainage channels, shall be retained. Whenever such features interfere with the proposed use of such property, retention of the maximum of such features consistent with the use of the property shall be required, at the discretion of the reviewing agency.
[1999 Code § 15.40.040]
The Stream Corridor Preservation Area is required to be delineated as the most restrictive limit of any of the three (3) distances established in accordance with the following schedule:
Minimum Distance from Stream**
Minimum Distance on Either Side of Stream From Outer Limits of Any Flood
Critical Slopes as Defined
Raritan River
150 feet
50 feet
100 feet or 50 feet
Delineated Streams
75 feet
50 feet
100 feet or 50 feet
Intermittent Or Undelineated streams
50 feet
50 feet
100 feet or 50 feet
**edge of channel
[1999 Code § 14.44.010; Ord. No. O.1695-2009§ 1]
The purpose of this section is to regulate the intensity of use in areas of steeply sloping terrain in order to limit soil loss, erosion, excessive stormwater runoff, the degradation of surface water and to maintain the natural topography and drainage patterns of land. The Township Council finds that residential and nonresidential developments have encroached into steep slope areas, thereby increasing the likelihood of erosion in periods of moderate or heavy rainfall and destruction of the natural character of the Township of Edison. The Township Council also finds that disturbance of steep slope areas of Edison Township produces including increased run-off, soil erosion, creation of retaining walls greater than four (4) feet in height and destruction of mature woodland areas that provide natural stabilization of steep slopes, gradual natural surface flows to streams and their tributaries and natural recharge groundwater resources in the headwaters and tributaries of the streams that originate within or flow through the Township. The Township Council finds that many of the steep slope areas are adjacent to streams and their tributaries and disturbance of these woodlands reduces the natural water filtering function of the stream banks thereby the water quality of the streams, increasing the turbidity of the streams and transportation of topsoil from the Township and reduction of the streams to fulfill their multi-faceted functions of surface drainage, subsurface recharge, and maintaining the natural stream bank habitat and canopy that is essential for maintaining and enhancing water quality, water temperatures and stream benthic and stream-edge vegetation and wildlife habitats.
[Ord. No. O.1695-2009§ 1]
Disturbance of steep slopes results in accelerated erosion processes from stormwater runoff and the subsequent sedimentation of waterbodies with the associated degradation of water quality and loss of aquatic life support. Related effects include soil loss, changes in natural topography and drainage patterns, increased flooding potential, further fragmentation of forest and habitat areas, and compromised aesthetic values. It has become widely recognized that disturbance of steep slopes should be restricted or prevented based on the impact disturbance of steep slopes can have on water quality and quantity, and the environmental integrity of landscapes.
[Ord. No. O.1695-2009§ 1]
This section shall be applicable to new development or land disturbance on a steep slope within the Township of Edison.
[Ord. No. O.1695-2009§ 1]
DISTURBANCE
Means the placement of impervious surface, the exposure or movement of soil or bedrock, or the clearing, cutting, or removing of vegetation.
IMPERVIOUS SURFACE
Means any structure, surface, or improvement that reduces or prevents absorption of stormwater into land, and includes porous paving, paver blocks, gravel, crushed stone, decks, patios, elevated structures. and other similar structures, surfaces, or improvements.
REDEVELOPMENT
Means the construction of structures or improvements on areas which previously contained structures or other improvements.
STEEP SLOPES
Means (i) any slope equal to or greater than twenty (20%) percent as measured over any minimum run of ten (10) feet, or (ii) a slope area of twelve (12%) percent or greater having a rise of five (5) vertical feet or greater. Steep slopes are determined based on contour intervals of two (2) feet or less based upon reliable data.
[Ord. No. O.1695-2009§ 1]
The percent of slope (rise in feet per horizontal distance) shall be established by measurement of distance perpendicular to the contour of the slope. The percent of slope shall be calculated for each two-foot contour interval. For example, any location on the site where there is a one-foot rise over a 10-foot horizontal run constitutes a ten (10%) percent slope; a one and one-half (1.5) foot rise over a 10-foot horizontal run constitutes a fifteen (15%) percent slope; a two-foot rise over a 10-foot horizontal run constitutes a twenty (20%) percent slope (5 to 1) slope).
[Ord. No. O.1695-2009§ 1]
a. 
For steep slopes any disturbance shall be prohibited except as provided below:
1. 
Redevelopment within the limits of existing impervious surfaces; and
2. 
New disturbance necessary to protect public health, safety or welfare, such as necessary linear development with no feasible alternative; to provide an environmental benefit, such as remediation of a contaminated site; to prevent extraordinary hardship on the property owner peculiar to the property; or to prevent extraordinary hardship, provided the hardship was not created by the property owner, that would not permit a minimum economically viable use of the property based upon reasonable investment. For example, redevelopment, within the footprint of existing impervious cover should be allowed to support efforts to revitalize development that has fallen into disrepair. The applicant shall demonstrate through site plans depicting proposed development and topography that new disturbance is not located in areas with steep slopes.
[1999 Code § 15.44.020; Ord. No. O.1695-2009§ 1]
a. 
Any property which is the subject of a minor or major subdivision or site plan application and which contains steep slopes shall comply with the provisions set forth below.
b. 
Existing and proposed lots with steep slopes and shall be subject to the following requirements:
1. 
Existing wooded and well-established steep slopes shall not be disturbed and shall be contained in conservation easements.
2. 
Previously disturbed, eroded and/or poorly stabilized steep slopes in excess of five (5) vertical feet.
(a) 
The approval board may require filling of the steep slope area with compacted clean fill to a maximum slope of twenty (20%) percent and restablization of the slope as described.
(b) 
Stabilization of the steep slope areas through application of topsoil, fertilization, seeding, ground cover, and tree planting to promote reforestation based upon a reforestation plan approved by the approval board.
(c) 
Steep sloped areas shall be contained in conservation easements.
3. 
If retaining walls are used to stabilize existing or proposed steep slopes, all slope area measurements will be calculated as if retaining walls were not used. Retaining walls of four (4) feet or greater shall be permitted only if their design is prepared and certified by a professional engineer licensed in New Jersey.
c. 
Steep slope areas shall be maintained in an open space condition and shall not have any structures constructed within it except for public structures and facilities (i.e. bridges, headwalls, endwalls, conduits and outlets).
[Ord. No. O.1695-2009§ 1]
a. 
Conflicts. All other ordinances, parts of ordinances, or other local requirements that are inconsistent or in conflict with this section are hereby superseded to the extent of an inconsistency or conflict, and the provisions of this ordinance apply.
b. 
Severability.
1. 
Interpretation. This section shall be so construed as not to conflict with any provisions of New Jersey or Federal law.
2. 
Notwithstanding that any provision of this section is held to be invalid or unconstitutional by a court of competent jurisdiction, all remaining provisions of the section shall continue to be of full force and effect.
3. 
The provisions of this section shall be cumulative with, and not in substitution for, all other applicable zoning, planning and land use regulations.
[Ord. No. O.1695-2009§ 1]
A prompt investigation shall be made by the appropriate personnel of the Township of Edison, of any person or entity believed to be in violation hereof. If, upon inspection, a condition which is in violation of this section is discovered, a civil action in the Special Part of the Superior Court, or in the Superior Court, if the primary relief sought is injunctive or if penalties may exceed the jurisdictional limit of the Special Civil Part, by the filing and serving of appropriate process. Nothing in this section shall be construed to preclude the right of Edison Township, pursuant to N.J.S.A. 26:3A2-25, to initiate legal proceedings hereunder in Municipal Court. The violation of any section or subsection of this section shall constitute a separate and distinct offense independent of the violation of any other section or subsection, or of any order issued pursuant to this section. Each day a violation continues shall be considered a separate offense.