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Stormwater Permits

Permits You May Need to Operate in Knox County

  • Application fees range from $200-$6,000 depending on acres disturbed. Please see the NOI for more information.

    Operators of construction sites involving clearing, grading or excavation that result in an area of disturbance of one or more acres, and activities that result in the disturbance of less than one acre if it is part of a larger common plan of development, must complete the Notice of Intent and submit to Knox County before a Notice of Coverage will be issued.

  • Flood Plain Development Permit:

    Knox County requires that a Floodplain Development Permit be obtained if the proposed development/building is within the outer half of the 100-year floodplain and/or the 500-year floodplain.

    The Federal Emergency Management Association (FEMA) requires new buildings’ minimum floor elevation (MFE) to be built one foot (1’) above the 100-year flood elevation. Knox County provides additional protection from potential flooding by requiring new buildings’ minimum floor elevation (MFE) to be one foot (1’) above the 500-year flood elevation.

    An Elevation Certificate is also required by the Knox County Stormwater Management Department for these developments/buildings that are required to obtain a Floodplain Development Permit (please see above), as part of our National Flood Insurance Program participation.

  • Grading Permit:

    As a Qualified Local Program, Knox County will no longer issue Grading Permits to sites that require a Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation Notice of Coverage (NOC) under the NPDES Stormwater Construction Permit.  In these instances, the issued NOC will serve as the grading permit.

    For developments that do not require a NOC, Knox County may still need to issue a grading permit.  The purpose of the grading permit is to require and document proper planning before beginning the land disturbing activity and to reduce or eliminate the potential for off-site sedimentation.

  • Small Lot Fill and/or Grading Agreement:

    Sites that do not fall under the NOC or the Grading Permit requirements may be asked to complete this application. The purpose of this document is to inform site owners of Knox County regulations and limits to site development not requiring design plans or stormwater pollution prevention plans.

  • Knox County Special Pollution Abatement Permit (SPAP):
    • This permit is for NEW construction
    • $100 application fee
    • A SPAP is required for development or redevelopment projects based on the potential for the development to impact stormwater runoff quality.  SPAP requirements are presented in detail in Volume 2, Chapter 10
  • Knox County Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP) for businesses:
    • This form is to be used for EXISTING facilities required to submit a SWPPP if the business is considered a “hot spot” with a potential to impact stormwater runoff quality.
    • This is NOT a fillable form. Please print and mail your SWPPP to the address listed in the document.
    • $100 application fee
  • Small Lot Erosion Prevention and Sediment Control Plan:

    This form must accompany any permit application for single family residential construction and site grading of less than one (1) acre. All paper work for this permit should be submitted to Knox County Code Administration and Inspection ( They may be reached at 865-215-2323.

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205 West Baxter Avenue
Knoxville, TN 37917

Phone: 865-215-5540
Fax: 865-215-5831

Monday - Friday
8:00 am - 4:30 pm
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