Our Floodplain

Our floodplains play important roles in maintaining our riverine ecosystems. How do they work?

Understanding floodplains

A floodplain is the land adjacent to water bodies that floods first when water levels rise. We often think of them as a nuisance to development, since they can complicate our building processes. However, our floodplains are also a valuable community resource.

Floodplain Scene

Water Quality Maintenance and Groundwater Recharge. In New Jersey, we drink our groundwater. Floodplains are a critical filtration system for water entering our watersheds. They can also store excess water by distributing it to our groundwater aquifers.

Recreation. Wildlife enthusiasts, birdwatchers, fishermen, hikers and picnickers regularly enjoy the recreational opportunities our floodplains provide.

Warning System. Floodplains are sensitive to changes in our natural environment and can alert us to undesirable natural conditions that are developing.

Agriculture and fishing. Floodplains play a crucial factor in replenishing nutrients in our soils, which aids both agriculture and fishing.

Wildlife Habitat. Waterfowl, fish, and other riverine critters populate our floodplains, where they feed, interact and breed.

Protecting our floodplain

Floodplains are an important and delicate part of the larger riverine system. Disrupting a single part of this system can have wide-ranging implications. We have a responsibility to treat our floodplains with care; please us protect them.

Don’t block culverts or drainage ditches. The Township’s stream maintenance program removes major blockages such as downed trees. This is a map of our streams/ditches and here is a map of known problem sites that the Township maintains regularly.

Don’t dump waste in/near waterways or storm drains. Please keep the storm drains, rivers and riverbanks clear of debris.

Landscape appropriately. Consider using alternatives to pesticides/fertilizers near waterways.

Let us know if you see debris in the ditches/streams. It’s difficult to monitor our entire floodplain 24 hours/day. Please contact the Public Works Department at 973-897-0327.

Develop responsibly. Our local floodplain ordinance serves as protective mechanism for our floodplains. Also, please follow permitting processes and abide by the Township Code.

Have questions?

If you would like to learn more about topics like flood insurance, local flood hazards, or historic floods, we’re here to help. Reach out to speak with your local floodplain expert.

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