Definitions specifically applicable to this Chapter are set forth in this Section and may modify definitions set forth in Section 12-10 (DEFINITIONS). Where matter in italics is defined both in Section 12-10 and in this Chapter, the definitions in this Chapter shall govern.



For buildings, or portions thereof, that comply with flood-resistant construction standards, a "basement" is a story (or portion of a story) partly below flood-resistant construction elevation, with at least one-half of its height (measured from floor to ceiling) above flood-resistant construction elevation.



For buildings, or portions thereof, that comply with flood-resistant construction standards, a “cellar” is a space wholly or partly below the flood-resistant construction elevation, with more than one-half its height (measured from floor to ceiling) below the flood-resistant construction elevation.


Flood-resistant construction elevation

The "flood-resistant construction elevation" is the greater of:

(a)        the “design flood elevation” determined pursuant to Appendix G of the New York City Building Code for a building’s structural occupancy category; or

(b)        the base flood elevation indicated on the flood maps, plus the additional elevation required above base flood elevation for the applicable occupancy category when determining the Design Flood Elevation pursuant to Appendix G of the Building Code.


Flood-resistant construction standards

“Flood-resistant construction standards” shall:

(a)        comply with the standards of Appendix G of the Building Code for “Post-FIRM Construction,” whether construction voluntarily complies with standards for “Post-FIRM Construction” or is required to comply; and

(b)        utilize the higher base flood elevation and the more stringent flood hazard area designation, as applicable, of the flood maps or the Flood Insurance Rate Maps in effect on October 28, 2012.


Hurricane Sandy

“Hurricane Sandy” is a severe storm that occurred on October 28, 2012, causing heavy flooding, power outages, property damage and disruption of public transportation and other vital services.


Lowest occupiable floor

The “lowest occupiable floor” shall be the finished floor level of the lowest floor that is not used solely for parking, storage, building access or crawl space, where any space below such lowest occupiable floor is wet flood-proofed in accordance with flood-resistant construction standards and used only for parking, storage or building access, or otherwise is not occupiable space.


Predominant or predominantly

"Predominant" or "predominantly" shall mean that a use or a group of uses comprises at least 75 percent of the total floor area of the building or of the area of the zoning lot, as applicable.