Property on a slope or high grade percentage

How to Calculate the Slope of Your Property for the ESCP

Lately, on our blog, we have been discussing the new Erosion and Sediment Control Plan requirement. The Department of Permitting and Planning recently handed down the new requirement, which directly affects all construction jobs. If you’ve been following our blog, you will recall that we discussed who all needs to have a plan and what needs to be in the plan. In case you’re new and just joining us or you need a review, let’s go over the basics.

As stated in our previous blog, anyone who plans to do a construction job that will disturb the property must submit an Erosion and Sediment Control Plan. The type of plan you submit will depend on the answers to these two questions: How much ground will you disturb? What is the slope of your property? Plans will fall in either Category 1A or 1B for our purposes.

  • Category 1A plans are for residential jobs of less than 1,000 square feet and a slope of 15% or less.
  • Category 1B plans are for residential jobs that are larger than 1,000 square feet but less than an acre or they are less than 1,000 square feet but the slope is more than 15 %.

The slope of the land is one important calculation you will need to have before you submit your Erosion and Sediment Control Plan. Without this information, you may fill out the wrong form.

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Calculating the slope of your construction project

If you notice your property has a slight grade to it, then you will need to measure it to determine the slope. Unless it is completely flat, measuring is the only way to make sure you are accurate about the degree of slope. If your disturbed area covers quite a distance, you may need to measure the slope area in sections and then add up the parts. However, if a regular tape measure will reach the area, then follow these steps to find the slope:

Step 1:

Measure how high the slope is. This is called the rise and will be a vertical measurement. You will likely need someone to assist you with this. You may need to use a string or another tape measure to extend out from the top of the slope so you can measure straight up to the appropriate height. When done, mark this number as the “rise.”

Step 2:

Next, measure the distance from the top of the slope straight across to the end of the slope. This is the horizontal run of the slope. However, do not measure along the slope itself or it won’t be accurate. The tape measure should be held straight out at the top of the slope and extend over to where the end of the slope is. Use a level if necessary to make sure the tape measure is straight. This number represents the “run.”

Step 3:

Finally, divide the rise by the run and multiply that total by 100. For example, if your rise is 20 feet and the run is 60 feet then your slope would be 33%.

Now that you have the slope measurement, you will be one step closer to finalizing your Erosion and Sediment Control Plan. If your slope exceeds the 15 % then you will need to fill out the appropriate plan templates for Category 1B. However, if your slope falls below 15 %, then fill out the paperwork for Category 1A.

Keep updated about the regulations for your construction job by checking our blog regularly. We will continue to post about the guidelines set forth by the Department of Permitting and Planning. Connect with Owner Built Design, LLC today for more information about all your home design plans.

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