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Toms River Disputing FEMA Guidelines For Home Building

In the wake of Sandy, the Advisory Base Flood Elevations are a bit too "conservative," officials say

Toms River officials are disputing new Federal Emergency Management Agency flood maps that could require homes to be built at certain heights.

On its website, Toms River officials say they believe there may be some "errors" on the FEMA maps for parts of Toms River.

Officials said the township's findings were based on a preliminary analysis from our Toms River engineers.

"We will be seeking clarification from FEMA on those issues, as we believe the maps are overly conservative regarding the height that homes would need to be built," officials said on the website.

In the interim, residents need to be aware that these base flood elevation plans from FEMA are "advisory," officials said.

"However, in a few months, the maps may end up being permanent, so plan accordingly," the website says. "Please consult with your engineer or architect."

FEMA Flood Maps are located at: http://184.72.33.183/Public/NJ/Index_Sandy_Central_Region.pdf. FEMA Flood Map (Toms River Barrier Island specific): http://184.72.33.183/Public/NJ/Ocean/pdf/Seaside_Park_NW.pdf

New maps have been released by FEMA recommending residents in flood zones in 10 counties and 194 communities throughout the state consider raising their homes anywhere between one and five feet on average, FEMA officials said.

The maps, part of the agency’s Advisory Base Flood Elevations, are being published online morning and will likely be used by communities to help establish standards during the rebuilding process following the destruction of Hurricane Sandy.

Although the data used in the storm does not include any relating to Sandy, officials say it best represents the type of flood protection needed during similar storms that have a one percent chance of occurring each year.

Sue December 18, 2012 at 04:34 PM
I just bought flood insurance. I'm 200 feet from the bay, and water was 3 ft. deep in my street). Cost is same as it was 2 years ago. That probably will be much higher next year. Just walls, floors and heating system being replaced, so I don't have to raise my house now. It would look ridiculous if I put it up on 9 ft. pilings and my neighbors didn't, but I'd have a nice view of the bay.
Irina December 18, 2012 at 05:26 PM
Maybe Toms River should just LEAVE IT ALONE.....Right now I'm not on the flood map. If TR ruffles FEMA's feathers then we ALL may wind up in the flood map.
Jill December 18, 2012 at 07:13 PM
You Have Spoken are probably not among the hundreds of us who flooded during Sandy. I've been in my house for 20 years and never have had a problem. One storm hits hard and they are requiring us to elevate our house to 9 feet. This is not acceptable. I am glad the town is stepping up.
al hart December 19, 2012 at 02:54 AM
Its not the BFE so much that is predominantly set at 9feet in the T.R. watercommunity,but the re-cofigurement of the zones thats the killer. I live on a street where FEMA has the beginning of the street closest to the bay classified a "V' zone, the middle of the street a "AE" zone, and the end of the street which is practically on a dead end swamp as a "V" zone again. ARE THEY KIDDING ME! Something has got to be done. V zones will probably command a $7000 flood premium.This is an economic beheading. TR Township help your citizens.
Mark December 19, 2012 at 02:49 PM
Correct me if I'm wrong but Toms River wants the elevations even higher?
Jeff 6th Ave Ortley December 19, 2012 at 10:31 PM
V zone is meant for, and is appropriate for, the first few rows of homes along the ocean beach. But huge blocks of bayside property? Risk of 3 foot BREAKING waves? We need to demand to see the scientific studies behind this. It effects 1000's and 1000's of properties in our area. No issue with elevating to a foot or two over the Sandy line, but this is much more restrictive.
Gino December 20, 2012 at 05:32 AM
I'm in a V zone. This will basically bankrupt me. Even if I had the money raising my 1100 square foot ranch house to 9 feet would make it look ridiculous. I'd never be able to sell it. The $30,000 ICC grant will come up in the ballpark of $20,000 short of what it will actually cost to elevate the house. I'm seriously thinking about just walking away. If they're going to ruin me financially anyway, what do I have to lose?
BIG DADDY December 21, 2012 at 02:24 PM
I'm in Snug harbor since 1976, We've had 100 year floods, tornados, hurricanes , numerous Nor easters and never even came close to what just happened. My take on this freak storm is the ocean came over Mantoloking and raised the Bay to the levels that caused the disaster. Let Fema build proper Dunes, sea walls, rock formations etc to keep this from happening again instead of handing out bottles of bleach, UGH !
Gabe December 29, 2012 at 03:02 PM
Creative thinking is needed. Gate the inlets to reduce high tide flow during storms as they do in Holland. It is less costly than raising thousands of homes and businesses and the economic destruction of an entire region. The Army corps could do this easily.
wookfish December 29, 2012 at 03:09 PM
Gabe think before you type.Gates? The surge washed OVER the beaches and dunes.flooding the bay and back bays. You can't stop mother nature no matter how hard you try, sooner or later even the gates in Holland wil be proven to be a total waste of money.
On our own December 29, 2012 at 03:35 PM
You would be lucky to have a $7000. premium! The bldg dept has spec sheets on insurance cost depending on BFE and where you are. If you are below the BFE, they speculate $31,000. a year!!! And unbelievably enough, our township engineer is lobbying to raise the BFE at certain places in Ortley!!! This is out of his wheelhouse, stick to designing parking spots... He alone could potentially kill Ortley Beach! See his letter , especially his comments on map B1, Find it on TR website, or I will forward it to all concerned.
On our own December 29, 2012 at 03:36 PM
YES!!! Township engineer is advocating changing some areas from AE to V!
On our own December 29, 2012 at 03:42 PM
This change, legally, is not to be based on a one time occurrance. I am on a beach block and in 15 years, I have never even seen water in my crawl space or street. Can the same be said for bayside properties? Lets not point fingers at each other, but be united against exorbitant sweeping changes that will adversely affect all
Gabe December 29, 2012 at 10:42 PM
In response to the Wookfish below....the Dutch have done it for 1000yrs. and have a more productive economy than ours. It is being done in other parts of the world such as Venice at a cost of 6billion. As a Wookfish you are more concerned with sport fishing than people and believe we are technologically incapable. The ocean did not breach in Seaside Park where they have dunes. Here are the shovel ready jobs instead of endless highway construction and wasteful spending we have seen in the past years.
BIG DADDY January 05, 2013 at 02:48 PM
FEMA = "F" Every Middleclass American

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