(1) A permit is required
for all development within the FEMA floodplain, flooding soils, and
wetlands. It shall be granted only after all necessary permit
applications are approved by Federal, State, and County agencies.
(2) The issuance of any
permits by the State of Maryland or Corps of Engineers does not permit
development within the Floodplain District except in conformity with
provisions of this chapter.
(3) The Zoning
Administrator may use tax assessment records to determine substantial
improvement when an improvement is proposed to an existing structure.
Substantial improvement will be calculated on a cumulative basis.
(4) Any substantial
improvement or replacement approved shall be in conformance with the
requirements of the permit program of the Maryland Department of the
Environment and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
(5) Within the FEMA
floodplain, substantial improvements, substantial improvements due to
existing structures substantial damage, replacement or relocated
dwelling units (including manufactured homes), the addition of accessory
buildings, the expansion or replacement of an existing nonconforming
use, or development of an existing parcel of record lying totally within
the FEMA floodplain, require approval by the Board of Appeals (§
(6) Within a danger reach
area, the replacement of dwelling units (including manufactured homes)
damaged by flood, the substantial improvement of habitable area within
existing structures, the addition of habitable area to an existing
structure, or development of an existing parcel of record lying
partially within a danger reach area require approval by the Board of
Appeals (§ 1-19-9.220(A)).
(B) Land development.
(1) FEMA Floodplain and Wetlands. Within
the FEMA floodplain and wetlands, no new development, including parking
lots impervious to water, or fill, or excavation operations in
conjunction with development will be permitted. Substantial
improvements, substantial improvements due to existing structures
substantial damage, replacement or relocated dwelling units (including
manufactured homes), the addition of accessory buildings, the expansion
or replacement of an existing nonconforming use, or development of an
existing parcel of record lying totally within the FEMA floodplain shall
be permitted only with approval by the Board of Appeals. Open
shelters, pole-type structures (open on all sides and without walls),
open fences and recreational uses, and recreational equipment which are
not contained in a building, are exempt from the requirements of this
section upon obtaining a zoning certificate in order to ensure the type
of construction will not alter the flood elevation, except as outlined
in § 1-19-9.110(D).
(2) Watershed Management Plans. All
substantial improvements, replacements or other developments within the
FEMA floodplain shall be consistent with watershed management plans
where such plans exist. Structures slated for acquisition under future
flood hazard management projects may not be improved or replaced.
(3) Floodplain and stream setbacks. A
minimum setback of 25 feet shall be provided from all Floodplain
district boundaries, except as otherwise approved through the mitigation
process described in § 1-19-9.110(B)(7), or a minimum setback of 50
feet shall be provided from the bank of any perennial or intermittent
stream, whichever is greater. All setback areas shall be maintained or
planted with natural vegetation.
(4) Subdivisions and site plans. All
new subdivisions or site plans shall have stream setbacks as well as
the 100-year floodplain and floodway delineations and elevations, as
reflected on Frederick County's Flood Insurance Study and Digital FIRM
published by FEMA clearly shown and certified by a registered
professional engineer, registered professional land surveyor, or
registered property line surveyor. The plan shall demonstrate that
development will avoid the FEMA floodplain. No new lots shall be
created unless they have adequate buildable area outside of designated
FEMA floodplain areas.
(5) Approximate FEMA floodplain.
For development proposed in the approximate floodplain Zone A (no
water surface elevations or floodway data provided), the applicant must
use the best available information to determine the elevation of the
100-year flood and the extent of the floodway, and must delineate these
on the site plan submitted for approval. For new subdivisions, the
applicant must have the 100-year flood elevations certified by a
registered professional engineer based on hydrologic and hydraulic
analyses which include a floodway analysis. For individual lot
development if no data are available, methods described in FEMA
Publication #265 “Managing Floodplain Development in Approximate Zone A
Areas” should be used to determine the 100-year flood elevation at the
(6) Floodway restrictions. No new development shall be permitted in the floodway except as provided in § 1-19-9.110(D).
(7) Flooding soils.
No new development shall be permitted in areas of flooding soils unless
approved through a mitigation process including the following:
(a) Submission by
the applicant of a geotechnical report and soils report prepared by a
registered professional engineer in the State of Maryland and a soil
scientist with full membership in a State Soils Professional
Organization or that meets certification requirements. The report shall
address soil characteristics to include flooding frequency, duration,
and surface water depth.
(b) Determination of
buildable areas by the Division of Permitting and Development Review in
consultation with the Soil Conservation District and the Natural
Resources Conservation Service.
(c) Submission by
the applicant of a mitigation plan for approval by the Division of
Permitting and Development Review in consultation with the Soil
Conservation District and the Natural Resources Conservation Service.
The mitigation plan shall include such factors as:
pond releasing at predevelopment rates to include capacity for temporary
inundation as determined in § 1-19-9.110 (B)(7)(a).
2. Use of techniques to reduce off-site runoff and ensure adequate groundwater recharge.
(C) Building standards.
Development within the FEMA floodplain shall meet the standards as
provided in subsection 1 through 4 below. Replacement or relocated
dwelling units (including manufactured homes) or substantial
improvements due to existing structures substantial damage or addition
of accessory buildings will not be permitted without the approval of the
Board of Appeals and then only if the lowest floor is elevated 1 foot
above the elevation of the 100 year flood and the dwelling or
improvement is placed on a permanent foundation or securely anchored to
an adequately anchored foundation system to resist flotation, collapse
or lateral movement.
(a) The elevation of
the lowest floor (see definition of “lowest floor”) of all
substantially improved or replaced structures shall be at least 1 foot
above the elevation of the 100 year flood. Basements are prohibited.
(b) All applicants
shall agree in writing to provide an elevation certificate completed by a
registered professional engineer or surveyor to certify the lowest
floor (as built) of any structure is elevated above the 100-year flood.
An Elevation Certificate must be submitted before a Zoning Certificate
may be approved.
(2) Enclosures below lowest floor. The
relocation or substantial improvements to existing structures or the
addition of accessory structures containing fully enclosed areas below
the lowest floor (including, but not limited to crawl spaces, solid
footings and continuous foundations) shall be designed to meet or exceed
the following minimum criteria:
(a) A minimum of 2
openings having a total net area of not less than 1 square inch for
every square foot of enclosed area subject to flooding shall be
(b) The bottom of all openings shall be no higher than 1 foot above grade.
(c) Openings may be
equipped with screens, louvers, valves, or other coverings or devices
provided that they permit the automatic entry and exit of floodwaters.
(3) Anchoring. All
structures shall be firmly anchored in accordance with acceptable
engineering practices to prevent flotation, collapse, and lateral
movement during flooding. All large pipes and storage tanks located
below the Flood Protection Elevation shall be firmly anchored to prevent
(a) Electric: All
electric utilities to the building side of the meter, both interior and
exterior to the building, must comply with all requirements of this
chapter. Distribution panel boxes must be at least 2 feet above the
Flood Protection Elevation. All outlets and electrical installations,
such as heat pumps, air conditioners, water heaters, furnaces,
generators, distribution systems, including duct work, must be installed
at or above the Flood Protection Elevation. Replacement HVAC equipment
shall be elevated to the Flood Protection Elevation unless proven to be
Toilets, sinks, showers, water heaters, pressure tanks, furnaces, and
other permanent plumbing installations must be installed at or above the
Flood Protection Elevation.
(c) Gas: Gas meters and gas appliances must be installed at or above the Flood Protection Elevation.
(d) Fuel tanks: All
gas (propane) tanks installed in the floodplain are required to be
anchored to prevent flotation in accordance with the National Fire
Protection Association Code 58. All tanks installed in floodplain areas
shall be either elevated or adequately anchored to prevent flotation up
to the Flood Protection Elevation. All fuel oil storage tanks
installed in the floodplain must be either elevated or securely anchored
to prevent flotation up to the Flood Protection Elevation. Vent pipes
must extend to or above the Flood Protection Elevation and fill caps
below the Flood Protection Elevation must be screw type with a tight
fitting gasket to prevent mixing of water with oil.
(e) Water supply and
sanitary facilities: Water supply distribution and sanitary disposal
collection systems must be designed to minimize or eliminate the
infiltration of flood waters into the systems or discharges from the
systems into flood waters and shall be located and constructed so as to
minimize or eliminate flood damage. On-site sewage disposal systems
shall meet these same standards.
(D) Exemptions. This
section does not prohibit the placement or repair of road crossings;
water impoundments for stormwater management; retention areas;
agricultural activities not requiring zoning certificate approval;
public utility lines; environmental mitigation projects; or other minor
wetland fill activities (less than 5,000 square feet of wetland impact)
within designated FEMA floodplain, flooding soils, or wetlands. These
floodplain activities must obtain all federal, state and local permits
required and for minor wetland fills receipt of a letter of no
significant impact from the responsible federal or state agency.
(Ord. 92-04-039, 2-18-1992; Ord.
92-13-048, 7-7-1992; Ord. 93-13-077, 6-1-1993; Ord. 07-29-469,
9-4-2007; Ord. 08-21-497, 8-5-2008)
Division 1. Floodplain District Regulations
1-19-9.100 Floodplain District
1-19-9.120 Procedures for Activities within the FEMA Floodplain
1-19-9.130 Watercourse Relocation or Alteration
Article IX Floodplain District Regulations