This ordinance is an attempt to strike a balance between better mitigating the impacts of new single family construction within the city' s established context of smaller homes, and providing for the flexibility to design and build new homes that accommodate the modern needs of home owners. In this regard, given the mandatory requirements for higher base flood and grade elevations, the proposal will allow for more breathing room along the most critical perimeters of new homes by providing for larger setbacks and establishing minimum open space requirements. This will provide more open space to allow for stormwater to be absorbed by the ground. It will also required new homes to raise yards to make them more resilient to sea level rise.
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.