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Maryland Coast Smart Council

House Bill 615– Section 3-1001-3-1004 of the Natural Resources Article – entitled “Coast Smart Council” - was enacted into law in 2014. This law established the Maryland Coast Smart Council in the Department of Natural Resources for the purposes of adopting specific Coast Smart siting and design criteria to address impacts associated with sea level rise and coastal flooding on future capital projects. The Council’s Coast Smart Construction Program, detailing its siting and design criteria and implementation procedures, was approved on June 26, 2015.

MD. State Finance and Procurement Code Ann. § 3-602.3, requires that beginning on July 1, 2015, if a State capital project includes the construction of a structure or reconstruction of a structure with substantial damage, the structure shall be constructed or reconstructed in compliance with the siting and design criteria established by the Council.

Coast Smart Construction Program

The Coast Smart Construction Program include guidelines, and other directives applicable to the preliminary planning and construction of proposed capital projects to address sea level rise and coastal flood impacts; a requirement that the lowest floor elevation of proposed structures located within a Special Flood Hazard Area be built at an elevation of at least 2 feet above the base flood elevation; and provisions establishing a process to allow a Unit of State Government to obtain a categorical exception and/or waiver from complying with specific implementation requirements.

The Coast Smart Construction Program is for the use of all State of Maryland agencies that design and build facilities or prepare programs and budgets for the design and construction of facilities. It is intended specifically for the use of project managers, capital planners, and the professionals who will design and operate State-owned facilities. The Program will be reviewed on an annually by the Council and revised as necessary to address issues which may occur as the building of State facilities and knowledge of Coast Smart building practices evolves.

Upcoming Meetings

Coast Smart Council
Date: Thursday, October 22, 2015
Time: 9:30 am-12:00 pm
Location: DNR Conference Room C-1

For More Information


Zoë Johnson
Maryland Department of Natural Resources
Chesapeake and Coastal Service
580 Taylor Ave., E-2
Annapolis, MD 21401
Phone: 410.260.8741