Municipality of Kingston, PA
Luzerne County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents

§ 97-23 General requirements.

A. 
Alteration or relocation of watercourse.
(1) 
No encroachment, alteration, or improvement of any kind shall be made to any watercourse until all adjacent municipalities which may be affected by such action have been notified by the Municipality and until all required permits or approvals have been first obtained from the Department of Environmental Protection's regional office.
(2) 
No encroachment, alteration, or improvement of any kind shall be made to any watercourse unless it can be shown that the activity will not reduce or impede the flood-carrying capacity of the watercourse in any way.
(3) 
In addition, FEMA and the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development shall be notified prior to any alteration or relocation of any watercourse.
B. 
Technical or scientific data shall be submitted by the applicant to FEMA for a letter of map revision (LOMR) as soon as practicable but within six months of any new construction, development, or other activity resulting in changes in the BFE. The situations when a LOMR or a conditional letter of map revision (CLOMR) are required are:
(1) 
Any development that causes a rise in the base flood elevations within the floodway; or
(2) 
Any development occurring in Zones A1-30 and Zone AE without a designated floodway, which will cause a rise of more than one foot in the base flood elevation; or
(3) 
Alteration or relocation of a stream (including but not limited to installing culverts and bridges).
C. 
Any new construction, development, uses or activities allowed within any identified floodplain area shall be undertaken in strict compliance with the provisions contained in this chapter and any other applicable codes, ordinances and regulations.
D. 
Within any identified floodplain area (see § 97-19), no new construction or development shall be located within the area measured 50 feet landward from the top-of-bank of any watercourse.

§ 97-24 Elevation and floodproofing requirements.

A. 
Residential structures.
(1) 
In AE, A1-30, and AH Zones, any new construction or substantial improvement shall have the lowest floor (including basement) elevated up to, or above, the regulatory flood elevation.
(2) 
In A Zones, where there are no base flood elevations specified on the FIRM, any new construction or substantial improvement shall have the lowest floor (including basement) elevated up to, or above, the regulatory flood elevation determined in accordance with § 97-19C of this chapter.
(3) 
The design and construction standards and specifications contained in the 2009 International Building Code (IBC) and in the 2009 International Residential Code (IRC), or the most recent revisions thereof, and ASCE 24 and 34 Pa. Code (Chapters 401-405, as amended) shall be utilized.
B. 
Nonresidential structures.
(1) 
In AE, A1-30 and AH Zones, any new construction or substantial improvement of a nonresidential structure shall have the lowest floor (including basement) elevated up to, or above, the regulatory flood elevation or be designed and constructed so that the space enclosed below the regulatory flood elevation:
(a) 
Is floodproofed so that the structure is watertight with walls substantially impermeable to the passage of water; and
(b) 
Has structural components with the capability of resisting hydrostatic and hydrodynamic loads and effects of buoyancy.
(2) 
In A Zones, where there are no base flood elevations specified on the FIRM, any new construction or substantial improvement shall have the lowest floor (including basement) elevated or completely floodproofed up to, or above, the regulatory flood elevation determined in accordance with § 97-19C of this chapter.
(3) 
Any nonresidential structure, or part thereof, made watertight below the regulatory flood elevation shall be floodproofed in accordance with the W1 or W2 space classification standards contained in the publication entitled "Flood-Proofing Regulations," published by the United States Army Corps of Engineers (June 1972, as amended March 1992), or with some other equivalent standard. All plans and specifications for such floodproofing shall be accompanied by a statement certified by a registered professional engineer or architect which states that the proposed design and methods of construction are in conformance with the above-referenced standards.
(4) 
The design and construction standards and specifications contained in the 2009 International Building Code (IBC) and in the 2009 International Residential Code (IRC), or the most recent revisions thereof, and ASCE 24 and 34 Pa. Code (Chapters 401-405, as amended) shall be utilized.
C. 
Space below the lowest floor.
(1) 
Fully enclosed space below the lowest floor (excluding basements) which will be used solely for the parking of a vehicle, building access, or incidental storage in an area other than a basement shall be designed and constructed to allow for the automatic entry and exit of floodwaters for the purpose of equalizing hydrostatic forces on exterior walls. The term "fully enclosed space" also includes crawl spaces.
(2) 
Designs for meeting this requirement must either be certified by a registered professional engineer or architect or meet or exceed the following minimum criteria:
(a) 
A minimum of two openings having a net total area of not less than one square inch for every square foot of enclosed space shall be provided.
(b) 
The bottom of all openings shall be no higher than one foot above grade.
(c) 
Openings may be equipped with screens, louvers, etc., or other coverings or devices, provided that they permit the automatic entry and exit of floodwaters.
D. 
Historic structures. See the definition of "substantial improvement" in § 97-36 for requirements for the substantial improvement of any historic structures.
E. 
Accessory structures. Structures accessory to a principal building need not be elevated or floodproofed to remain dry but shall comply, at a minimum, with the following requirements:
(1) 
The structure shall not be designed or used for human habitation but shall be limited to the parking of vehicles or to the storage of tools, material, and equipment related to the principal use or activity.
(2) 
Floor area shall not exceed 200 square feet.
(3) 
The structure will have a low damage potential.
(4) 
The structure will be located on the site so as to cause the least obstruction to the flow of floodwaters.
(5) 
Power lines, wiring, and outlets will be elevated to the regulatory flood elevation.
(6) 
Permanently affixed utility equipment and appliances, such as furnaces, heaters, washers, dryers, etc., are prohibited.
(7) 
Sanitary facilities are prohibited.
(8) 
The structure shall be adequately anchored to prevent flotation or movement and shall be designed to automatically provide for the entry and exit of floodwater for the purpose of equalizing hydrostatic forces on the walls. Designs for meeting this requirement must either be certified by a registered professional engineer or architect or meet or exceed the following minimum criteria:
(a) 
A minimum of two openings having a net total area of not less than one square inch for every square foot of enclosed space shall be provided.
(b) 
The bottom of all openings shall be no higher than one foot above grade.
(c) 
Openings may be equipped with screens, louvers, etc., or other coverings or devices, provided that they permit the automatic entry and exit of floodwaters.

§ 97-25 Design and construction standards.

The following minimum standards shall apply for all construction and development proposed within any identified floodplain area:
A. 
Fill. If fill is used, it shall:
(1) 
Extend laterally at least 15 feet beyond the building line from all points;
(2) 
Consist of soil or small rock materials only; sanitary landfills shall not be permitted;
(3) 
Be compacted to provide the necessary permeability and resistance to erosion, scouring, or settling;
(4) 
Be no steeper than one vertical to two horizontal feet, unless substantiated data justifying steeper slopes are submitted to and approved by the floodplain administrator; and
(5) 
Be used to the extent to which it does not adversely affect adjacent properties.
B. 
Drainage facilities. Storm drainage facilities shall be designed to convey the flow of stormwater runoff in a safe and efficient manner. The system shall ensure proper drainage along streets and provide positive drainage away from buildings. The system shall also be designed to prevent the discharge of excess runoff onto adjacent properties.
C. 
Water and sanitary sewer facilities and systems.
(1) 
All new or replacement water supply and sanitary sewer facilities and systems shall be located, designed and constructed to minimize or eliminate flood damages and the infiltration of floodwaters.
(2) 
Sanitary sewer facilities and systems shall be designed to prevent the discharge of untreated sewage into floodwaters.
(3) 
No part of any on-site sewage system shall be located within any identified floodplain area except in strict compliance with all state and local regulations for such systems. If any such system is permitted, it shall be located so as to avoid impairment to it, or contamination from it, during a flood.
(4) 
The design and construction provisions of the UCC and FEMA No. 348, Protecting Building Utilities From Flood Damages, and the International Private Sewage Disposal Code shall be utilized.
D. 
Other utilities. All other utilities, such as gas lines, electrical and telephone systems, shall be located, elevated (where possible) and constructed to minimize the chance of impairment during a flood.
E. 
Streets. The finished elevation of all new streets shall be no more than one foot below the regulatory flood elevation.
F. 
Storage. All materials that are buoyant, flammable, explosive or, in times of flooding, could be injurious to human, animal, or plant life, and not listed in § 97-26, Development which may endanger human life, shall be stored at or above the regulatory flood elevation or be floodproofed to the maximum extent possible.
G. 
Placement of buildings and structures. All buildings and structures shall be designed, located, and constructed so as to offer the minimum obstruction to the flow of water and shall be designed to have a minimum effect upon the flow and height of floodwater.
H. 
Anchoring.
(1) 
All buildings and structures shall be firmly anchored in accordance with accepted engineering practices to prevent flotation, collapse, or lateral movement.
(2) 
All air ducts, large pipes, storage tanks, and other similar objects or components located below the regulatory flood elevation shall be securely anchored or affixed to prevent flotation.
I. 
Floors, walls and ceilings.
(1) 
Wood flooring used at or below the regulatory flood elevation shall be installed to accommodate a lateral expansion of the flooring, perpendicular to the flooring grain, without causing structural damage to the building.
(2) 
Plywood used at or below the regulatory flood elevation shall be of a marine or water-resistant variety.
(3) 
Walls and ceilings at or below the regulatory flood elevation shall be designed and constructed of materials that are water-resistant and will withstand inundation.
(4) 
Windows, doors, and other components at or below the regulatory flood elevation shall be made of metal or other water-resistant material.
J. 
Paints and adhesives.
(1) 
Paints and other finishes used at or below the regulatory flood elevation shall be of marine or water-resistant quality.
(2) 
Adhesives used at or below the regulatory flood elevation shall be of a marine or water-resistant variety.
(3) 
All wooden components (doors, trim, cabinets, etc.) used at or below the regulatory flood elevation shall be finished with a marine or water-resistant paint or other finishing material.
K. 
Electrical components.
(1) 
Electrical distribution panels shall be at least three feet above the base flood elevation.
(2) 
Separate electrical circuits shall serve lower levels and shall be dropped from above.
L. 
Equipment.
(1) 
Water heaters, furnaces, air-conditioning and ventilating units, and other electrical, mechanical or utility equipment or apparatus shall not be located below the regulatory flood elevation.
M. 
Fuel supply systems. All gas and oil supply systems shall be designed to prevent the infiltration of floodwaters into the system and discharges from the system into floodwaters. Additional provisions shall be made for the drainage of these systems in the event that floodwater infiltration occurs.
N. 
Uniform Construction Code coordination. The standards and specifications contained 34 Pa. Code (Chapters 401-405), as amended, and not limited to the following provisions shall apply to the above and other sections and subsections of this chapter, to the extent that they are more-restrictive and supplement the requirements of this chapter:
(1) 
International Building Code (IBC) 2009, or the latest edition thereof: Sections 801, 1202, 1403, 1603, 1605, 1612, 3402, and Appendix G.
(2) 
International Residential Building Code (IRC) 2009, or the latest edition thereof: Sections R104, R105, R109, R323, Appendix AE101, Appendix E and Appendix J.

§ 97-26 Development prohibited which may endanger human life.

A. 
In accordance with the Pennsylvania Flood Plain Management Act, and the regulations adopted by the Department of Community and Economic Development as required by the Act, any new or substantially improved structure which: will be used for the production or storage of any of the following dangerous materials or substances; or will be used for any activity requiring the maintenance of a supply of more than 550 gallons, or other comparable volume, of any of the following dangerous materials or substances on the premises; or will involve the production, storage, or use of any amount of radioactive substances; shall be subject to the provisions of this section, in addition to all other applicable provisions. The following list of materials and substances are considered dangerous to human life:
(1) 
Acetone.
(2) 
Ammonia.
(3) 
Benzene.
(4) 
Calcium carbide.
(5) 
Carbon disulfide.
(6) 
Celluloid.
(7) 
Chlorine.
(8) 
Hydrochloric acid.
(9) 
Hydrocyanic acid.
(10) 
Magnesium.
(11) 
Nitric acid and oxides of nitrogen.
(12) 
Petroleum products (gasoline, fuel oil, etc.).
(13) 
Phosphorus.
(14) 
Potassium.
(15) 
Sodium.
(16) 
Sulphur and sulphur products.
(17) 
Pesticides (including insecticides, fungicides, and rodenticides).
(18) 
Radioactive substances, insofar as such substances are not otherwise regulated.
B. 
Within any Floodway Area, any structure of the kind described in Subsection A above shall be prohibited.
C. 
Within any identified floodplain area, any new or substantially improved structure of the kind described in Subsection A above shall be prohibited.

§ 97-27 Special requirements for subdivisions.

All subdivision proposals and development proposals containing at least 50 lots or at least five acres, whichever is the lesser, in identified floodplain areas where base flood elevation data are not available shall be supported by hydrologic and hydraulic engineering analyses that determine base flood elevations and floodway information. The analyses shall be prepared by a licensed professional engineer in a format required by FEMA for a conditional letter of map revision or letter of map revision. Submittal requirements and processing fees shall be the responsibility of the applicant.

§ 97-28 Special requirements for manufactured homes.

A. 
Within any Floodway Area/District, manufactured homes shall be prohibited.
B. 
Within any identified floodplain areas, manufactured homes shall be prohibited.

§ 97-29 Special requirements for recreational vehicles.

A. 
Recreational vehicles in any zone must:
(1) 
Be on the site for fewer than 180 consecutive days; and
(2) 
Be fully licensed and ready for highway use.