Obtaining a Stormwater Permit

The Environmental Protection Agency has identified sedimentation from land disturbance activities and polluted runoff from land development and redevelopment as major sources of water pollution, impacting drinking water supplies, natural habitats, and recreational resources.

As of November 1st, 2023, all applications filed will be reviewed under the revised Bylaw and Regulations. The updated bylaw and regulations are available here, and a summary of changes can be found here. Changes from prior bylaws detailed below are underlined.

Any activity which will construct or fully reconstruct a new single-family home, OR disturb 3,000 square feet or more of land or involve the movement of 250 cubic yards or more of soil is required to provide stormwater management, and may require a Stormwater Permit, under the Natick Stormwater Management & Erosion Control Bylaw (Stormwater Bylaw). There are three types of approvals under the Stormwater Bylaw with different thresholds.

Administrative Approval

  • Any newly developed (on previously undeveloped land) or fully reconstructed single-family home must provide stormwater management capable of holding a volume equal to 1 inch over all proposed impervious area (including but not limited to driveway, sheds, impervious patios, etc.).
  • New or reconstructed single-family homes within the Aquifer Protection District must provide 120% of the storage volume required. 
  • Documentation including, but not limited to, engineered plan sheets, stormwater management calculations, and Operation and Maintenance Plans must be provided for review as part of the building permit application for the project.

Minor Permits: 

  • Any Land Disturbance, excluding new or reconstructed single-family home, greater than 3,000 square feet, but not exceeding 20,000 square feet. Land disturbance includes any activity that causes a change in the position or location of Soil or a change in the patterns of drainage and/or infiltration of water. 
  • The construction of a new Drainage Facility or alteration of an existing Drainage Facility greater than 3,000 square feet, but not exceeding 20,000 square feet.
  • The addition, on-site redistribution, or export of greater than or equal to 250 cubic yards, but not exceeding 1000 cubic yards of Soil.
  • Any project within the Minor Permit threshold within the Aquifer Protection District must provide 120% of the storage volume required

Major Permits:

  • Any Land Disturbance, excluding new or reconstructed single-family home, greater than 20,000 square feet.
  • The construction of a new Drainage Facility or alteration of an existing Drainage Facility greater than 20,000 square feet.
  • The addition, on-Site redistribution, or export of more than 1000 cubic yards of Soil.
  • Any project within the Major Permit threshold within the Aquifer Protection District must provide 120% of the storage volume required

Stormwater Permit Process

  1. Review the information included on this page to determine what permit you will need. If you need assistance, call the Community & Economic Development office at 508-647-6452.
  2. Review the Stormwater Management & Erosion Control Bylaw and its Regulations.
  3. Go to https://natickma.viewpointcloud.com/ to access the online permitting system. If this is your first time applying, you will need to set up an account. 
  4. Click on the Conservation Commission button to view all permits reviewed and approved by the Conservation Commission, and select the appropriate permit. For projects under the Administrative Approval category, please submit required materials with the Building Permit application.
  5. Submit an online application with all required materials through OpenGov. 
  6. Administrative Approval review will occur as part of the building permit review within the 30 days allowed for the review of those permit applications. Review will include Conservation, Engineering, and Public Health staff.
  7. Minor Permits are reviewed and approved/denied by staff. Once an application is deemed complete, staff have 10 business days to review applications and either request changes from the applicant or issue a permit. If changes are requested, the 10 business day review period resets once revised plans are received.
  8. Major Permits are reviewed and approved/denied by the Natick Conservation Commission (NCC).
    • The NCC meets the 1st and 3rd Thursday of every month at 7 PM.
    • Major Permits require notice to abutters within 100 feet of the project. Applicants are responsible for sending out abutter notifications a minimum of 7 business days in advance of their hearing date. Certified abutters lists will be automatically uploaded to OpenGov by Assessor's Office once the application intake review is complete.Proof of mailing is required to be submitted at the application's first public hearing. Major Permits also need to be advertised in the newspaper (the Community Development office will take care of this).
    • Attend one or more scheduled NCC meetings to present your application. Sometimes the NCC can make a decision in one night. Other times they may request additional information or want to conduct a site visit and will continue your application to a future date.
  9. Receive a decision. Decisions will be issued through OpenGov, and all required inspections can be requested through OpenGov. If a permit is issued, pay attention to any conditions you are required to abide by!

Fees

Minor Stormwater Permits: $100 plus $0.05/SF of total work area - to be paid in OpenGov

Major Stormwater Permits: $250 plus $0.05/SF of total work area - to be paid in OpenGov 

Design Guidelines

While reviewing applications, the Town will consider whether a project implements best practices in regards to handling stormwater. These stormwater standards or best practices are included in the MA Stormwater Handbook and Appendix A of the Natick Stormwater Regulations. The following are some best practices to utilize:

  • Environmentally sensitive site design
  • Minimizing impervious surfaces (driveways) and capturing as much stormwater on-site naturally (such as through vegetation)
  • Maintaining existing site topography and drainage patterns
  • Retaining as much natural vegetation as possible
  • Use of rain gardens, bioswales, rain barrels, green roofs, etc.  
  • Avoiding construction within the floodplain
  • Utilizing appropriate erosion and sedimentation tools during construction

Click here to learn more about what the Town is doing in regards to stormwater.