Preliminary Ecological Assessments
It is important for land owners and developers to identify natural resources that may be regulated by federal and/or state agencies prior to planning land development projects. Partners is capable of providing a preliminary ecological assessment as a separate document or as part of a package of other due diligence services, which may also include a Phase I Environmental Site Assessment (ESA), Land Survey and/or Property Condition Assessment (PCA). The Preliminary Ecological Assessment includes a review of aerial photographs, National Wetland Inventory maps, Soil Surveys and a discussion of field observations regarding potential regulated waters, wetlands or endangered species/sensitive habitat within the Property. This information can be critical in determining the overall development costs, timing and potential land use limitations.
The purpose of a wetland delineation is to define and survey the boundaries of the wetlands and/or streams at the site, collect data regarding soils, vegetation and hydrology and compile a report that is suitable for submission to the US Army Corps of Engineers (Army Corps) for their review and verification. The delineation is performed in accordance with the Army Corps of Engineers Wetlands Delineation Manual (1987) and other state programs, as applicable.
The Army Corps regulates the discharge of dredged and fill materials into wetlands and streams that are determined to be “Waters of the United States”. The Army Corps issues general nationwide permits for specific activities that result in the impact to jurisdictional wetlands and streams such as commercial and residential land development, installations of culverts, oil/gas, and mining activities. Furthermore, the State EPAs often regulate isolated wetlands that typically are not regulated by the Army Corps. Permit issuance is usually contingent upon the implementation of a compensatory mitigation plan, which typically involves purchasing wetland credits from an approved mitigation bank or restoring wetlands and/or streams on the property. Partners is capable of preparing and coordinating the issuance of Army Corps and State EPA permits, developing mitigatory compensation plans and assisting in designing minimal impact land developments to reduce the mitigation obligation.
Protected Species Habitat Surveys
Certain undeveloped areas may provide suitable habitat for species of plants and/or animals that are protected by federal or state laws. Partners is skilled at the identification of protected species habitat and can provide a detailed survey of your Property indicating the presence and location of sensitive habitat.
Partners’ staff has a diverse and development-oriented background that provides experience and ingenuity to formulate creative solutions to your development needs
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