Development Review & Emergency Response

 

Contact

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  • Lalit Lalwani, P.E.
  • Civil Engineer III
  • Engineering & Operations
  • 5620 NW 120 Lane
  • Gainesville, FL 32653
  • 352-374-5245 x1243

Mission

To provide for the necessary review and approval of paving and drainage improvements associated with proposed developments.

This program will provide engineering support to the Board through the Development Review Committee and Zoning Application Process.

This office is also responsible for making flood zone determinations, administering the flood hazard areas, subdivision access management and stormwater management ordinances. Responsible for evaluating levels of service on the stormwater management systems as pertains to concurrency issues.​​​​​​​​​​​

Lalit L. Lalwani, P.E.

Lalit has served as the Development Review Engineer for Alachua County since March 2003. He represents the Public Works Department in applications related to Zoning, Comprehensive Plan updates, Land Development Regulations to Development Review Committee, the Local Planning Agency and Board of County Commissioner’s (BoCC).

Lalit works with Transportation Engineering staff in reviewing traffic studies, signal warrant analysis, roundabout justification studies, speed zoning studies, and reviewing signage and pavement marking requests. Additionally, he works with Stormwater Engineering staff in reviewing stormwater models and geotechnical reports.  Lalit coordinates with Construction Inspections on permitting and construction related issues pertaining to all development projects as well as projects affecting County infrastructure. He manages all projects that require Contractual Surety Agreements and Pay Applications. He also coordinates with Real Property on matters related to easements, acquisitions and annexations.

e served as Regional Director for the Florida Floodplain Managers Association from 2012 to 2018. Lalit is a member of the American Public Works Association and a member of the Association of State Floodplain Managers. Lalit is FEMA certified through the National Incident Management Systems (NIMS).​

Lalit Lalwani-2.jpg

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Determining Flood Risk

Functions
  • Administers development regulations for land subdivision, private site development, stormwater management, access management and flood plain management
  • Recommends to the Development Review Committee as to issues regarding transportation concurrency, stormwater, parks and solid waste issues
  • Recommends and provides technical expertise to the Board of County Commissioners as to issues regarding comprehensive land amendments and rezoning requests
  • Recommends to the Board of Adjustment as to issues regarding zoning variances and subdivision regulations
  • Reviews
  • and issues commercial access, paving and drainage improvement permits
  • Provides needed flood information (Flood Insurance Rate Zone Information) and assistance to the public upon request​

For Flood Insurance Rate Zone Information, please call our automated voice-mail system at (352) 337-6140. Have your Tax Parcel Identification Number and Physical Address available. Most requests are answered by the next working day.

For information regarding Public Works-related issues on Comprehensive Plan Amendments, Rezoning Requests or Board of Adjustment Requests, contact Lalit Lalwani at (352) 374-5245 x1243, or email at llalwani@alachuacounty.us.

How Can I Determine If I Am At Risk For Flooding?

It is important for every resident to know the floodplain classification for their property. FEMA publishes maps indicating a community's flood hazard areas and the degree of risk in those areas. To determine the risk for your specific property, call the following officials for your jurisdiction:

Community Agency Telephone FEMA Map Community Number

Alachua County

Public Works

352-337-6140

120001

City of Alachua

Public Works

386-462-1231

120664

City of Archer

City Hall

352-495-2880

120670

City of Hawthorne

(Hawthorne does not participate in NFIP)

City of Gainesville

Public Works

352-334-5069

125107

City of High Springs

City Hall

386-454-1416

120669

Town of LaCrosse

(LaCrosse does not participate in NFIP)

120626

Town of Micanopy

City Hall

352-466-3121

120344

City of Newberry

City Hall

352-472-2161

120679

City of Waldo

City Hall

352-468-1001

120003

Floodplain Maps Online

To browse floodplain maps, visit:

Floodplain Development Permit Requirements

Any development in the floodplain requires a flood hazard area permit according to the Unified Land Development Code Ch. 406. If you need a flood zone determination, contact Alachua County Public Works at 352-337-6140 or the City of Gainesville Public Works at 352-334-5069.

If you need a FEMA elevation certification or suspect that illegal floodplain development is occurring call the Alachua County Building and Zoning Department at 352-374-5244 or the City of Gainesville Building Inspection Department at 352-334-5050.

To report suspected illegal developement click on this link: http://growth-management.alachuacounty.us/complaint/create​

A​dditionally, in accordance with NFIP standards, Alachua Co. Building Code requires if the cost of any reconstruction, rehabilitation, addition or other improvements to a building equals or exceeds 50% of the building’s market value, such work is considered a substantial improvement . The existing building is then required to meet the same standards as a new building. For residential structures, these requirements typically mean raising the living area of the building to the base flood elevation.

Substantial Improvement Requirements

Substantial improvement shall mean any repair from damage or destruction, reconstruction, improvement, or additions of a structure, the cost of which equals or exceeds 50% of the assessed tax value of the structure as is listed by the Alachua County Tax Assessors Office or by a certified appraisal. The assessed value of the structure shall be determined before the improvement is started, or if the structure has been damaged and is being restored, before the damage or destruction occurred.

For FEMA's substantial improvements/damage reference click on this link: https://www.fema.gov/sites/default/files/2020-07/fema_nfip_substantial-improvement-substantial-damage-desk-reference.pdf

Drainage System Maintenance

A community can lose a portion of its drainage system carrying or storage capacity due to dumping, debris, soil erosion and sedimentation, and overgrowth of vegetation. When this happens, flooding occurs more frequently and reaches higher elevations, subjecting properties otherwise protected to unnecessary risk of damage. Keep grass clippings and other debris out of stormwater storage and treatment capacity. Per county ordinance, it is illegal to dump trash and debris in drainage ways.

If you experience any localized drainage problems please notify the County Public Works Department at 352-374-5245 or 386-462-2147 or the City of Gainesville - Streets Division at 352-334-2161 so that the problem can be corrected.

To report suspected illegal dumping in stormwater drains click on this link: http://growth-management.alachuacounty.us/Complaint/Create​

Community Rating System-Alachua County is a Class 6 Community

On September 11, 2018, the Alachua County Commission was presented a plaque from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for improvement to a Class 5 from a Class 6 rating (on a scale from 1 to 10; 10 being the lowest, 1 being the highest) of the Community Rating System (CRS).

The CRS is a voluntary incentive program of the National Flood Insurance Policies (NFIP) and provides for discounted flood insurance premiums to property owners in participating communities. Alachua County homeowners required to carry flood insurance will receive an additional 5% discount (a 25% discount, as opposed to the current 20% discount) on their flood insurance premiums. The CRS rating is effective October 1, 2017, and is good for three years.

Alachua County has been a participating community in the NFIP since 1984 and in the CRS since 1995. The Community Rating System effort is a result of collaboration between the various Alachua County Departments; Fire Rescue, Growth Management, Environmental Protection and Public Works.

The three goals of the CRS are:

  1. Reduce flood damage to insurable property.
  2. Strengthen and support the insurance aspects of the NFIP and
  3. Encourage a comprehensive approach to Floodplain Management.

This reflects the County’s commitment to protecting lives and property through mitigation and wise planning practices.

For more information on the CRS click this link: https://www.fema.gov/sites/default/files/documents/fema_community-rating-system_local-guide-flood-insurance-2018.pdf​

Additional Sources for Information
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