Trader Jakes – Issue 896- June 26, 2020
Page 8 “Thank You For Reading Trader Jakes”
“YOUR SMALL CONSTRUCTION SITE”
WHAT ARE SWALES?
Swales are those grassed shallow channels outside of homes and businesses along most streets in the City. They are an excellent pollu-
tion-removing and stormwater conveying part of the City’s MS4 (Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System)
HOW DO THEY WORK?
• They transport water from the point of origin to
an outfall, a canal, wetland, pond etc.
• They allow sediments and pollutants to settle
out of stormwater while infiltrating into the earth.
• They re-charge our groundwater table while
allowing cleaner water to flow to the outfalls.
Swales that are overburdened by sediment from construction sites become silted-up, and
are unable to allow water to percolate
causing more and more polluted stormwater to enter our waterways
As a builder, contractor, or landowner in the City of Palm Bay there are steps that you need to follow to protect our water and other envi-
ronmental resources. Below is a list of City Departments and other agencies that are considered the first step in the process of responsi-
ble construction on residential lots. Contact the agencies below before contacting the City’s Building Division for a Building Permit and
before any land altering activity:
• The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation (listed species of concern)
• The Florida Department of Environmental Protection if wetlands are on, or near to your site
• City of Palm Bay Land Development Division to determine if a flood zone permit is
required. See the City’s website for more information or contact the Land Development Division at (321) 733-3042.
• City of Palm Bay Utilities Customer Service Contact (321) 952-3420 or email@example.com
• Brevard County Environmental Health Services at 321-633-2100 orBrevard.EHS@flhealth.gov
Once these Departments and agencies have investigated the site in its natural state and have provided you with guidance and/or permits,
you’re now ready to contact the City’s Building Division and Driveway and Lot Drainage
Division to apply for permits to construct.
WHEN DOES CONSTRUCTION BEGIN?
Construction begins with site clearing and grubbing. Clearing involves brush and tree
removal. Grubbing means bare earth is exposed, which can easily runoff to the City’s
swales. Clearing and grubbing may begin when you have received your Building Permit
and follow the best management practices below.
LAND CLEARING BEST MANAGEMENT PRACTICES- FOR SMALLER/
SINGLE FAMILY RESIDENTIAL CONSTRUCTION SITES (< 1 ACRE)
Silt fence must be properly installed surrounding the entire property and
maintained throughout the duration of site construction until the site is
permanently stabilized by seed ing, or sod.
• A temporary entrance/exit may be constructed using gravel to prevent soil tracking off the site. These entrances may not allow pollutants
to enter the City’s drainage system (MS4) and may not block upstream flow.
A temporary pipe can be installed below the gravel to ensure upstream sites are not sub-
ject to flooding.
If construction is dormant for a long time with bare earth exposed temporary stabiliza-
tion should be in place, such as seeding, or sod.
You’ve protected your site and the swales and are ready
to begin construction
Dumpsters should be kept onsite only, in a high dry area. Construction and other waste/
debris shall be kept in the dumpsters which will be emptied when full.
Port-o-lets for workers shall be kept onsite only, also in a dry area
Practice good housekeeping by keeping oil/fuel or chemicals of any kind securely con-
If spills occur have a spill prevention and clean-up plan in place
Maintain a concrete wash out area on site, make sure it all stays on site.
Throughout the construction process, surveyors, and building inspectors will need to
inspect your building, driveway, and lot grading. They will also ensure that best manage ment practices remain in place.
If you as a builder, contractor, or landowner have questions about applying the best management practices described above feel free to call
321-953-8985. For more information about building single family homes in the City of Palm Bay please visit:www.palmbayflorida.org/services/city-services/permits-and-inspections