City of Brentwood takes steps toward modifying home elevation standards for flood prevention

The Brentwood City Commission approved on first reading Oct. 14 an ordinance to modify city regulations on how high residents can elevate their homes to prevent future flooding.

Over the past several weeks, Brentwood residents have attended city commission meetings, asking commissioners and staff to consider raising the maximum elevation heights for homes in the city. Residents have argued the city's existing standards are not high enough to prevent flooding in their homes, which has caused residents to incur high flood insurance costs.

This amendment to city elevation standards will allow for homes to be raised to a maximum of 7.5 feet above the natural grade on which the home sits. The previous maximum height was 5 feet.

The new ordinance also stipulates that should a homeowner need to raise their home by more than the maximum 7.5 feet, the home must be raised up with piers instead of with walls with flood vents.

Should homes be located within a floodway, homeowners who mean to raise their homes' elevation will have to have an engineer issue a no-rise certification stating that raising the home will not cause flooding in the surrounding area, City Manager Kirk Bednar said during the meeting.

The ordinance passed unanimously on first reading. A second and final reading is expected to be on the commission's Oct. 28 agenda.
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By Wendy Sturges

A Houston native and graduate of St. Edward's University in Austin, Wendy Sturges has worked as a community journalist covering local government, health care, business and development since 2011. She has worked with Community Impact since 2015 as a reporter and editor and moved to Tennessee in 2019.


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