Stormwater Management & Erosion Control Permit

As sites in Watertown are developed or redeveloped, the land is disturbed by construction activities such as tree clearing and excavation of surface materials and soils that leaves the ground exposed. Demolition debris, fuels, chemicals and construction materials are often stored on site.  On a windy or rainy day, exposed soils are susceptible to being blown or washed away. Materials without proper protections can also be washed away.  Stormwater runoff from construction sites can collect pollutants like sediment, oil, and grease and carry them to into the City’s storm drains and the Charles River, without and treatment.

After construction ends, the paved areas, roofs, and other impervious surfaces will continue to generate stormwater pollution and contribute to flooding problems if there are insufficient long-term stormwater controls on a site.

DPW administers the City’s Stormwater Management and Erosion Control Ordinance, Chapter 98 of the Code of Ordinances to regulate stormwater management and erosion control during and after construction. Projects of certain size and scope are required to obtain a permit from DPW to demonstrate compliance with the permit. In general, the following types of projects require coverage under a permit:

  • New single family residential construction
  • New two-family residential construction or residential addition with new unit
  • New commercial or multi-unit residential construction
  • Net increase in site impervious surface area by more than 500 square feet
  • Land disturbance of 5,000 square feet of total area or more (includes driveway and parking lot excavation, reclamation, milling)
  • Land disturbance of 1 acre or greater (If YES, project additionally requires USEPA Construction General Permit)
  • Preliminary site investigation activities that will be part of a larger common development plan that will disturb 5,000 square feet of total area or more
  • Create or modify a direct connection to the MS4 (City of Watertown stormwater system)


Stormwater Management and Erosion Control Ordinance

Stormwater Management and Erosion Control Rules and Regulations (Updated September 2021)

September 28, 2015 Presentation to Town Council Committee on Public Works

For contractors: Construction Site Impacts and Erosion and Sediment Control Requirements

As-built Requirements

Applications and Forms

Stormwater Management and Erosion Control Permit Application

Stormwater Management and Erosion Control Permit Transmittal Fee

Single and Two Family Checklist

Multi-family Residential and Commercial Checklist


Massachusetts Erosion and Sediment Control Guidelines for Urban and Suburban Areas

Massachusetts Stormwater Handbook and Stormwater Standards