Authorization for Modifications of Natural Features

For any development, enlargement, or site alteration on plan review sites or within designated open space, the City Planning Commission may authorize modifications of the natural topography existing on November 2, 2023 beyond the amount specified in Section 107-31 (General Regulations for Natural Features), inclusive, or modification of tree regulations pursuant to Section 107-312 (Regulations within plan review sites).

The Commission may authorize modifications to natural features, provided that the Commission finds that:

  1. the modifications are the minimum necessary to facilitate the project;
  2. such modification of topography is necessary to accommodate any public amenities, as applicable, such as public pedestrian ways, the waterfront esplanade or active recreational facilities within a designated open space as required under the provisions of this Chapter;
  3. such modification will not cause unnecessary disturbance of the drainage pattern in the area;
  4. such modification will have minimal impact on the existing natural features of the surrounding area and will blend harmoniously with such area; and
  5. areas that contain natural features are preserved within a proposed area of no disturbance, especially those areas which are contiguous to designated open space, areas of no land alteration, or other area containing mostly natural features.

The Commission may prescribe appropriate conditions and safeguards to minimize adverse effects on the character of the surrounding area.