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Post-Construction Stormwater Ordinance for the City of Charlotte
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Federal law says the City of Charlotte must adopt a Post-Construction Stormwater Ordinance (PCO) by June 2009.  This is part of the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permitting process required by the Clean Water Act. These requirements apply to urbanizing communities.

At their November 26, 2007 meeting, City Council unanimously approved the adoption of a Post-Construction Stormwater Ordinance. This ordinance will take effect within the City and Extra-Territorial Jurisdiction (ETJ) limits July 1, 2008.

flooded house and street 

Unchecked stormwater runoff from upstream development can cause flooding

View the adopted City of Charlotte Post-Construction​ Stormwater Ordinance (PCO) in printer-friendly format. Official version of PCCO in the City Code (Select Chapter 18 – STORMWATER).

The Charlotte City Council approved these revisions to the Post Construction Controls Ordinance in October, 2011.​

The Adminis​trative Manual.  ​

View the Storm Water Permit Application flow chart
View the
Charlotte-Mecklenburg BMP Design Manual.
View the BMP Maintenance Handbook.
View the Watershed Districts Map

View the
Frequently Asked Implementation Question​s.
View the
Natural Area Guidance Document.​
View the Water Quality Buffer Implementation Guidelines.

Special PCO provisions are allowed in the following areas:


A group of stakeholders met over several years to develop a draft Ordinance. View information about the adoption process.

What will the Post-Construction Stormwater Ordinance require?
In general, the ordinance requires:

  • No-build zones and undisturbed natural buffers of varying widths along streams,
  • A portion of the site be left as undisturbed natural area,
  • Installation of approved, on-site storm water Best Management Practices such as rain gardens, detentions ponds, and wetlands to collect and treat storm water, and
  • Construction of storm water detention measures that reduce flooding risks for downstream properties and streets.

What are the benefits of the Post-Construction Stormwater Ordinance?

  • Implementation of the ordinance allows municipalities to remain compliant with State and Federal mandates.
  • The measures of the ordinance will help protect drinking water supplies from degradation.
  • Additional State and Federal drivers that could slow growth and development are addressed.
  • Stream bank erosion and flooding risks are reduced.
  • An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Costly future watershed restoration may be reduced of avoided entirely.
  • Stream and lake water quality and habitat are protected for an increased quality of life. 

For more information about the City's Post-Construction Stormwater Ordinance, please contact:


PCSO Administrator


For more information about the municipalities included and related requirements, visit the State Division of Water Quality website.