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Development & Redevelopment Requirements

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Development and Redevelopment Requirements

The City has adopted new post-construction BMP requirements, effective February 16, 2016, for all development and redevelopment projects that take place in the City. Requirements and guidance for implementing post-construction BMPs are detailed in the National City BMP Design Manual (PDF) and the National City BMP Design Manual Appendices (PDF). These requirements replace the Standard Urban Stormwater Mitigation Plan (SUSMP) Manual.


How do I determine what requirements apply to my project?

 Complete the Storm Water BMP Requirements Form for Standard and Priority Development Projects (Forms I-1 and, if applicable, I-2; referred to as "Applicability Form") to identify applicable requirements.  This form must be submitted for all projects at the permit application phase.


The Applicability Form asks me to identify distance Environmentally Sensitive Areas--how do I do that?

The easiest way is to go to the online Google Map of ESAs and around in National City and use the distance measurement tool.  Google provides instructions on how to use the distance measurement tool.  You may also consult with staff at the Engineering Counter.


Is there any guidance on how to meet the requirements?  Are there any exemptions?

Yes, Storm Water BMP Requirements Form for Standard and Priority Development Projects (Applicability Form) includes instructions on how to meet the requirements that apply to your project. 

  • Certain kinds of projects, such as interior improvements, are exempt.  The Applicability Form provides more detail on what kinds of projects qualify for exemptions.
  • Standard Projects are required to include a set of Low Impact Development measures like directing downspouts to landscaping, where feasible.  Standard notes to be included on plans are provided in the Applicability Form.
  • Priority Development Projects (PDP) are required to prepare and submit a Storm Water Quality Management Plan (SWQMP).  See below for additional information.

There is also a regionally-administered help desk that you can contact via email.  A list of frequently asked questions (and answers) is also available.  See the regional Project Clean Water site for more information.


Is there a template for preparing SWQMPs?

Yes, the City has prepared a template and additional resource files to assist applicants.  While applicants are not required to use the City's template, using the City's template helps streamline the review process.  The following files and resources are available:

Is it possible that my project is exempt from hydromodification management requirements?
The new requirements include fewer exemptions than were previously available, but it is possible that some projects may still be exempt.  Now that the San Diego Bay Water Quality Improvement Plan has been approved, projects that discharge directly to the Sweetwater River Flood Control Channel or that have hardened conveyances (storm drain pipes or channels with concrete bottoms and banks) for the entire flow path between the project and the Sweetwater River generally qualify for an exemption.  For additional details on hydromodification exemptions, see Section 1.6 of the National City BMP Design Manual.  You may also consult with staff at the Engineering Counter for additional assistance.


What are potential critical coarse sediment yield areas?

Part of the new hydromodification requirements in the BMP Design Manual include an assessment of critical coarse sediment yield areas that a project may impact.  Only a small portion of the City of National City has been identified as a potential critical coarse sediment yield area.  See the PDF map of critical coarse sediment yield areas or the online Google Map for additional details.  If your project impacts a critical coarse sediment yield area, see the National City BMP Design Manual for additional details on identifying impacts and mitigation measures.


Is it possible that my project may be subject to previous requirements instead of the new requirements?
For a project to be granted Prior Lawful Approval and therefore be subject to the previous BMP requirements (SUSMP), the project must have been approved and permitted prior to the effective date (February 16, 2016), and construction must begin (break ground) within 180 days of the new requirements going into effect. Please contact the Engineering Department for additional details. 


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