Sustainability and Resiliency / Green Building
High performance sustainable building and development is a means of balancing economic development with the preservation of quality of life. This ordinance requires all new construction over 7,000 square feet or ground floor additions to existing buildings over 10,000 square feet to be LEED Gold Certified or Future Living Institute Living Building Challenge or Petals Certified. In order to achieve green building standards, the proposed ordinance requires the payment of a Sustainability Fee for eligible buildings prior to obtaining a Temporary Certificate of Occupancy TCO), Certificate of Occupancy ( CO), or Certificate of Completion ( CC). This fee is set as a five 5%) percent of the construction valuation. The proposed fee is based on research that indicates that this is the average cost of achieving LEED Gold Certification. The proposed ordinance then provides for refunds of the fee based upon the level of green building certification achieved. Learn more about the green building ordinance.
The ordinance amended Chapter 54, ” Floods”, by establishing a minimum and maximum freeboard above base flood elevation for all properties. It requires the ground floor of new buildings to be located a minimum of 1 foot and up to 5 feet above the FEMA base flood elevation or have enough headroom to raise the floor in the future without affecting the maximum permissible height of the building.
Development Regulations – Grade Elevations and Height
FEMA FIRM panels indicated a base flood elevation in certain areas of the city of 7.0 feet NGVD, and a review provided by AECOM indicated that a large storm event would create a flood risk situation even at a flood elevation of 8.0 feet NGVD. In order to ensure the health, safety and welfare of the City of Miami Beach, it was recommended that existing low-lying infrastructure and future construction projects for structures, including buildings, be elevated in order to reduce risk or maintain low risk from potential flood damage. For this reason, the Base Flood Elevation (BFE) was established at 8.0 ft. NGVD (6.44 ft. NAVD) throughout the City.
Comprehensive Plan – Peril of Flood
In 2015, the Florida Legislature adopted Senate Bill 1094, entitled ” Peril of Flood”, which requires the Coastal Management elements of local government Comprehensive Plans to include regulations related to the mitigation and reduction of flood risks in coastal areas. Additionally, in 2011 the Florida Legislature passed the Community Planning Act (CPA), which amended Section 163.3177, Florida Statutes, which allows local governments the option of planning for coastal hazards and the potential impacts of sea level rise within the Comprehensive Plan. This provided local governments with the option of designating Adaptation Action Areas ( AAA). The designation is for areas that experience coastal flooding and that are vulnerable to the related impacts of rising sea levels, with the purpose of prioritizing funding for infrastructure and adaptation planning. In order to improve the City’ s ability to mitigate the impacts of sea level rise and comply with Senate Bill 1094, the proposed amendment would affect future land use, infrastructure, conservation/coastal zone management , and intergovernmental coordination.
In order to be consistent with established policy goals of enhanced landscaping and the preservation of existing tree canopy in the City, this ordinance will complement the city’s other efforts in tree protection, such as assuming the responsibility for tree removal permits from Miami-Dade County, which occurred on June 15, 2015. The City of Miami Beach Landscape Ordinance establishes minimum landscape standards utilizing best practices for South Florida in order to accomplish the following: Enhance, improve, and maintain the quality of landscape; prevent the destruction of the City’s existing tree canopy and promote its expansion; improve the aesthetic appearance of new development and protecting designated historic landscapes; promote sound landscaping principles through the use of drought and salt tolerant plant species and also to promote planting the right tree and plant in the right place; promote the use of trees and shrubs for energy conservation, thereby helping to offset global warming and local heat island effects.
Seawall Height Resolution
Increase of seawall caps on all new private construction and all public seawall construction be from 3.2 feet NAVD to 5. 7 feet NAVD throughout the City; however, on existing private seawalls that are being replaced/ repaired not associated with new building construction, a minimum 4.0 NAVD elevation shall apply with the structural design to accommodate a seawall height extension to a minimum 5. 7 NAVD.
Non-Conforming Buildings Sustainability
The proposed ordinance would require that certain buildings undergoing a substantial renovation, in excess of 50% of the value of the structure, be subject to the Sustainability and Resiliency Requirements of Chapter 133 of the City Code with some modifications. Chapter 133 requires a minimum of LEED Gold Certification, or the payment of a fee of five percent 5%) of construction value. The percentage is based on research indicating the estimated cost of achieving the applicable level of certification. In order to not overly burden historic structures undergoing a renovation, the regulations requiring compliance with the Sustainability and Resiliency.Requirements of Chapter 133 for projects undergoing a substantial renovation were modified.
Sea Level Rise and Resiliency Review Criteria
As the City is facing an increase in flooding due to sea level rise, it is important that Land Use Boards incorporate criteria to address and plan for the effects of sea level rise and climate change. The ordinance amendment establishes Sea Level Rise and Resiliency Review Criteria within Chapter 133, entitled ” Sustainability and Resiliency,” of the Land Development Regulations. This criteria will facilitate the climate adaptation and mitigation discussion between the applicant and staff during the review process, and subsequently at land use board review.
Commercial Heights Standards
This ordinance amendment would allow for buildings in commercial districts to be developed up to an additional five (5) feet of height, provided that the first floor has a minimum of 12 feet from the base flood elevation (BFE) plus maximum freeboard, to the top of the second floor slab. This would provide for the ability of the ground floor to be placed at a lower level, while providing sufficient ceiling high for the ground floor to be raised when roadways or sidewalks are raised.
Alternative Parking Requirements
The city desires to further reduce the use of private vehicles for commuting in order to reduce congestion and greenhouse gas emissions. The Transportation Master Plan and Comprehensive Plan incorporate a 2035 mode share vision which seeks to reduce commuting through private vehicles to 42 percent and increase the share of other modes respectively( See” Adopted 2035 Mode Share Vision” attached). The ordinance helps reduce vehicle parking requirements, provided tangible forms of alternative transportation, including bicycle facilities, are provided.
Urban Heat Island
This ordinance requires certain strategies to be implemented to minimize the urban heat island effect (UHI) – a phenomenon where temperatures in developed, urban areas are elevated compared to surrounding areas. The ordinance requires that new construction install a sustainable roofing system (blue, green, white, solar, or metal roof), and surface parking and driveway areas utilize a high albedo surface or porous pavement. The ordinance also waives public hearing fees for the installation of sustainable roofing systems, solar carports, porous pavement, and cool pavement. For more information about the benefits of different sustainable roofing systems, click here.