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Florida - This includes all public notices for projects being reviewed for Standard Permits within the State of Florida.

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Tropical Storms & Other Emergencies - These public notices provide information on procedures for emergency permitting requirements due to specific tropical storm events or other emergency situations.

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  Setback Guidance
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U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Jacksonville District, Setback Guidance for Structures along Certain Federal Channels

Posted: 11/27/2017

Expiration date:


On December 18, 2013, the Jacksonville District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) provided public notice of the setback criterion to be utilized for the review of structures proposed to be placed along certain Federal channels (Setback Guidance). The Setback Guidance applies to works and structures located within the following waterways:

• Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway (AIWW) from the Florida State line south to the St. Johns River,
• Intracoastal Waterway (IWW) on the east coast of Florida from the St. Johns River to Miami,
• Intracoastal Waterway (GIWW) on the west coast of Florida from the Caloosahatchee River to the Anclote River,
• Okeechobee Waterway (OWW) those portions not covered by Regional General Permit number 67. This would include the waterway from the W.P. Franklin Lock and Control Structure west to Punta Rassa and from the St. Lucie Lock and Dam east to its intersection with the east coast Intracoastal Waterway.

Establishing Setback Guidance is necessary to advise the public of the manner in which Jacksonville District intends to exercise its authority under the R&HA to (1) maintain the navigable capacity of the Federal channels by minimizing both potential hazards to navigation and impediments to maintenance dredging created by structures located along the edges of the channels and (2) ensure that proposed modifications do not impair the usefulness of a Federal project and are not injurious to the public interest. For these reasons, the setback for all structures is 100’ from the near design edge of the aforementioned federal channel. The December 2013 Setback Guidance superseded all previous setback policy, criteria, and/or guidance established by the Jacksonville District.

Under the December 2013 Setback Guidance, applicants requesting a variance to the 100-foot setback to place a structure closer than 62.5’ from the near design edge of the federal channel, were required (to the maximum extent practicable) to restrict the width of the structure to 1/3 of the lot’s shoreline, up to a maximum width of 40'. The 1/3 width, up to 40' maximum criteria in the 2013 Guidance was intended to reduce the potential of structures to impact the navigable capacity of the Federal channels by minimizing both potential hazards to navigation and impediments to maintenance dredging created by structures located along the edges of the channels. The Corps has decided to remove the maximum 40' restriction associated with variances to the setback, but retain the restriction that the width of the structure not exceed 1/3 of the width of the shoreline when centered on the property.

The Setback Guidance does not have binding effect. It is guidance to the public which provides predictability on how the Corps reviews structures along certain federal channels. Each proposed project is reviewed on case-by-case based on site specific information and there is no guarantee that proposed structures will be authorized closer than 100' from the near design edge, consistent with the waterward extent of neighboring structures, or up to 1/3 the width of the shoreline. Removal of the 40' width restriction recognizes the Corps’ flexibility to allow, as appropriate under its authorities, variances to the 100' setback for development up to 1/3 of the shoreline for properties which exceed 120' of shoreline. This revision will not diminish the Corps’ ability to operate and maintain the Federal channels in an efficient, cost-effective and environmentally acceptable manner.

The revised Setback Guidance is effective concurrent with this public notice and is available on our website at http://www.saj.usace.army.mil/Missions/Regulatory/ItemsofInterest.aspx.

This public notice is issued by the Chief, Regulatory Division.




Donald W. Kinard
Chief, Regulatory Division

federal channels Jacksonville District public notice Setback guidance for Federal Channels U.S. Army Corps of Engineers USACE