Model Ordinances



Many areas of North New Jersey are underlain by carbonate bedrock such as limestone and dolomite. The solution of this bedrock causes surface depressions, open drainage passages, and the development of irregular, sub-surface rock topography known as karst. These conditions make such areas unstable and susceptible to subsidence and surface collapse. As a result, the alteration of drainage patterns in these areas by the placement of impervious coverage, grade changes, or increased loads from site improvements can lead to land subsidence and sinkholes.


The adoption of a limestone ordinance by your community will also avoid legal battles over what resource studies and engineering information is necessary when contemplating development over limestone bedrock. Our ordinance utilizes a check-list format for data submission. Also included is a table which outlines the general protocol for evaluating and designing different types of development projects. This pro-active, site-specific design process ultimately provides the project owners with information on the economic costs associated with the limestone site constraints.