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December 16, 2021 - Utility Plan Review Deferral for Tax Abatement 

Changes in the real estate tax abatement for new residential construction will take effect on January 1, 2022. To apply for a real estate tax abatement under the existing abatement schedule, applicants must obtain an issued building permit from L+I by December 31, 2021. Projects expecting an issued building permit by that date, were recommended to file the building permit application no later than October 1, 2021.

This deadline has led to an increased volume of Utility Plan submissions and PWD is not able to meet typical service level goals for reviews. To provide additional support to all projects, PWD will be deferring the Utility Plan approval for any project that submitted their building permit application on or before October 1, 2021. If you believe that your project is eligible for this deferral, please ensure that it is resubmitted and available in the PWD Utility Plan Review queue in eCLIPSE for sign-off by December 21, 2021. If you are unsure how to resubmit your permit in eCLIPSE, please refer to this factsheet and L+I’s online resources.

Projects who receive a deferral in the Utility Plan Review must still obtain Utility Plan Approval before any associated plumbing, fire suppression, or water/sewer connection permits will be issued and before a Final Inspection can be scheduled. The applicant must still meet all L&I requirements and PWD cannot guarantee that L&I will issue the Building Permit prior to the 12/31/2021 deadline.

September 1,  2021 - New Rates for Review Fees

On June 16, 2021, the Water, Sewer, and Storm Water Rate Board adopted and filed its Rate Determination on the rate changes proposed by the Philadelphia Water Department. The new rates, including rates for stormwater review fees, are effective as of September 1, 2021 and can be viewed here:

August 12, 2021 - Updates from the Development Services Unit

PWD’s Review and Permitting Processes 

There have been no changes to PWD submission, review or permitting procedures as a result of the new unit formation. Applications should continue to follow established procedures for obtaining water/sewer connections permits and metering, as well as for submissions to Act 537, Stormwater Management, Private Cost, and Utility Plan Review. Applications who are not familiar with current processes, or how these have been impacted by COVID-19 and the release of L+I's electronic permitting system (eCLIPSE), should refer to these resources for more information: 

  • PWD Response to COVID-19:  
  • PWD Development Reviews:  
  •  L+I eCLIPSE:

Stormwater Plan Review Drop-Offs by Appointment Only 

Stormwater Plan Review fee payment and Operations and Maintenance Agreements may be mailed or dropped off in-person at PWD Headquarters. In person deliveries are available by appointment only. To schedule an appointment email   

Rates and Charges Adjustments effective September 1, 2021  

Following proceedings of the Philadelphia Water, Sewer, and Storm Water Rate Board changes to PWD rates and charges will take effect on September 1, 2021. This includes miscellaneous charges that impact development projects such as meter installation, water connections, and stormwater review fees including an in increase in the Stormwater management Fee in Lieu from $15 to $25 per square foot.  View current and future charges here

Updated Pre-Application Meeting Request Form! 

PWD has mad significant updates to the pre-application request form to support meeting request related to all PWD development reviews as well as to allow stormwater project tracking to start prior to the ERSA Application. Projects exempt from submitting an ERSA can still use this form to request a meeting with PWD.  Pre-application meetings are optional for most development projects but mandatory for projects receiving Stormwater Grant funding.   

August 2, 2021 - New Unit Streamlines Service for Development Projects 

PWD is excited to announce the creation of the new Development Services Unit, merging Utility Plan Review, Stormwater Plan Review, and related support groups into a single unit to better serve private development project needs.

The goal of the Development Services Unit is to support development through transparent requirements and streamlined processes to ensure projects comply with regulations that protect our city’s water resources.

The Development Services Unit will improve and expand the services that we offer developers while maintaining clear requirements to ensure an ongoing, working relationship with the Philadelphia development community.

Some of the unit’s initiatives include:

  • Identifying and publishing clear service-level goals for all PWD pre-requisite permit reviews.
  • Updating and releasing comprehensive guidance documents so that requirements and processes are clear and accessible to all.
  • Working with other PWD divisions and programs to provide coordinated responses to development projects.
  • Developing public-facing, web-based resources and conducting outreach for development community feedback.

If you have any questions or want to provide input on how DSU can support your work, please feel free to reach out to

April 22, 2021 - Timelines for PWD Reviews

Updates to the real estate tax abatement for new residential construction projects will take effect on January 1, 2022.

To apply for a real estate tax abatement under the existing abatement schedule, applicants must obtain an issued building permit from L+I by December 31, 2021.

Most projects undergo multiple rounds of review prior to obtaining approval. Some PWD development project reviews can average 8 months to complete. 

This includes time spent with PWD for review, but the majority of time is spent with the applicant for revisions.

The below factsheet details each PWD pre-requisite review and associated review timelines as well guidance for how to complete reviews in the shortest time possible. Applicants are encouraged to use these timelines when planning their projects especially if they have critical funding or tax abatement deadlines.


Feburary 24, 2021 - PWD & SBN: Spring Maintenance Workshop

The Philadelphia Water Department (PWD) and the Sustainable Business Network (SBN) are hosting a virtual Spring Maintenance Workshop:

Thursday March 25th
9:30 AM to 11:30 AM

As the PWD Stormwater Regulations reach year 15, more and more stormwater management practices (SMPs) are being designed, built and maintained across the city each year. 

The purpose of the Maintenance Workshop is for SMP maintenance providers, regulators, and design engineers to examine the operations and maintenance phase of the SMP lifecycle and collaborate on best practices for incorporating maintenance considerations into SMP and site designs. 

Philadelphia-area maintenance providers, design engineers, and PWD will be presenting on the following topics:

  • Standard SMP maintenance practices and equipment
  • Developing a feedback loop between maintenance providers and SMP designers
  • Designing SMPs with maintenance in mind
  • PWD’s Post-Construction Inspections Program

For registration and to find out more about the workshop, please visit SBN’s website to register for the workshop. 

Register for Maintenance Workshop

PWD and SBN are also looking for volunteers to present at the workshop on the above or a related topic. If you are interested, please contact

SBN is also seeking exemplary GSI projects, innovations, and leaders for the 5th Annual Excellence in GSI Awards (spring 2021). Use this form for nominations


Feburary 10, 2021 - COVID-19 Service Updates: Limited In-Person Drop Offs,  Reg Finder, and Review Timelines

I​n light of the on-going COVID-19 pandemic, Private Development Services has made a number of programmatic changes. For a complete list of these changes please see the homepage alert as well as our newsfeed.  Although our staff continues to work remotely we are making every effort to expand services. New for 2021: Limited In-Person Drop-Offs, Virtual Walk-Ins, and the Reg Finder


In-Person Drop-Offs (Pre-Registration Required)

Since March 2020, we have continued efforts to make the review process accessible via remote conditions. However, applicants must still pay review fees by check and provide an executed hard copy of the O&M Agreement. To better facilitate this process, an In-Person Drop-off option is being provided. Beginning February 16, 2021, applicants who pre-register will be able to drop-off documents (review fee payments and O&M Agreements only) to PWD Headquarters.  

In-Person Drop-Offs will ONLY be available as follows: 

Tuesdays & Thursdays

8:30am - 10am & 1pm - 3:30pm

1101 Market Street

5th Floor 

Philadelphia, PA 19107

To pre-register, applicants must email by 4pm the day prior and confirm the requested drop off dateproject tracking number, items to be delivered, and the name of the person and company who will be delivering the documents. Visitors must wear a face covering at all times when in the building and bring photo ID for security purposes. To obtain a stamped receipt, you must bring a copy of the PWD invoice.  

Note that drop-offs will be handled entirely by administrative staff. Review staff will not be available to discuss project specifics or issue approval letters in person. To accelerate the approval process, you may email your reviewer a copy of the stamped invoice receipt.


Reg Finder Now Live! 

To aid in the project planning process, PWD has released a new a new GIS-based tool: Reg Finder. The Reg Finder is a GIS application that allows applicants to determine site-specific regulatory requirements prior to submitting an ERSA application. In addition, information can be downloaded as a PDF for easy sharing. 


Review Timelines 

Review times are approaching normal for most stormwater reviews: 5 -10 days for conceptual reviews, 15 days for Post Construction Stormwater Management Plan (PCSMP) Reviews, and 5 days for expediated PCSMP Reviews. 

Check your Application Status

Most projects undergo multiple rounds of review at both the Conceptual and PCSMP review stages prior to obtaining approval. The average length of time from initial ERSA Submission to PCSMP Approval is 8 months. This includes time spent with PWD for review, but the majority of time is spent with the applicant for revisions. Most projects obtain Conceptual Approval within 1 month and PCSMP Approval within 4 months, with an average of 3 months between the two review steps. Applicants are encouraged to use these timelines when planning their projects especially if they have critical funding or tax abatement deadlines.


January 8, 2021 - Stormwater Grant Awardees Announced

The Philadelphia Water Department is proud to announce 11 new Stormwater Grant awardees, including six that support stormwater management on Philadelphia Schoolyards. Approved by the Department’s Grant Selection Committee, these projects will support PWD’s goals to improve water quality in Philadelphia. 

This year, we received a record number of grant applications and appreciate the efforts of all who applied. Check out this @PhillyH2O Blog post to learn more about the awarded projects, whose applications included surface greening and additional benefits to site occupants and surrounding communities. 

Learn about the 2020 Stormwater Grant recipients

If project teams would like to discuss the results of this grant round or ask the Stormwater Incentives team about competitive grant application features, please email Please note that the Stormwater Incentives team is not regularly reporting to the office at this time, so phone call responses may be delayed. 

November  20, 2020 - Utility Plan Review Deferrals for Property Tax Abatement

This deferral is only available to residential construction projects seeking to obtain a building permit under the existing tax abatement program, which expires on 12/31/2020. Once a properly completed Deferral Request Form is received, PWD will defer sign-off of the Utility Plan requirement in the L&I eCLIPSE system. 

Should an applicant choose to defer the PWD Utility Review, they will accept the associated risk including unknown limitations including but not limited to public water and sewer availability, meter access and location, service pipe sizing, and right-of-way impacts. The applicant must still meet all L&I requirements and PWD cannot guarantee that L&I will issue the Building Permit prior to the 12/31/2020 deadline. The applicant will be required to obtain a PWD Utility Plan Approval before any associated plumbing, fire suppression, or water/sewer connection permits will be issued. 

Important Information:

  • The Deferral Request Form must be properly completed with no missing information.
  • To obtain a deferral, a completed Deferral Request Form must be received by PWD by 5pm EST on 12/18/2020.
  • The completed Deferral Request Form must be attached to an email submitted to, with the subject line: “PWD Deferral Request Form: Property Address, L&I Building Permit number”, and will be not be accepted by any other means.
  • Only one Property Address and associated building permit number is allowed per Deferral Request Form.
  • The Utility Plan Deferral Request Form does not relieve the applicant of obtaining other federal, state, and local permits.

October 22, 2020 - New Notification Process for COVID-19 Service Updates

COVID-19 Service Related Updates to Private Development Services will now be posted on the top of the homepage along with latest review times. 

October 1, 2020 - Now Available: Updated Stormwater management Guidance Manual!

The Philadelphia Stormwater Management Guidance Manual Version 3.2 is now live. It provides comprehensive stormwater management guidance for all private property, including both regulated Development and voluntary Stormwater Retrofit projects. It can viewed here

What to Expect from the Update: 

  • Greater continuity between design and construction requirements for regulated and voluntary retrofit projects.
  • Detailed instructions on the review process for regulated Development projects, voluntary Stormwater Retrofit projects, and hybrid projects.
  • Updates to account for an almost completely virtual review and permitting process at PWD and between PWD and L+I.  This includes guidance for online plan submission through
  • Detailed information and critical considerations for Stormwater Retrofit projects as well as updates on the Stormwater Credits program. 

What Else We Updated:  

  • An increase in the maximum loading ratio for all subsurface infiltration systems (regulated and voluntary retrofit projects) to 10:1. 
  • Reorganization of Sections 3.1 and 3.2 for ease in locating specific design requirements such as Disconnected Impervious Cover, Stormwater Management Practice (SMP) Hierarchy, and Stormwater Management Banking and Trading.  
  • A modification of the SMP Hierarchy to remove porous asphalt and porous concrete as highest-preference SMPs. Any new ERSA Applications received on or after October 1st, 2020 cannot use these materials to qualify for Expedited PCSMP Reviews.      
  • An expanded suite of Standard Details, now included under a new Appendix to the Manual, Appendix L. 
  • Formalized standards for the required creation of an SMP Maintenance Guide, with associated documents now included under a new Appendix to the Manual, Appendix G. 
  • Expanded basin setback requirements and exceptions for bioinfiltration/bioretention, subsurface infiltration, and subsurface detention. 
  • Modified requirements for soil sampling, cased borehole soil characterization borings, and cased borehole infiltration testing. 
  • Other updates to clarify existing policies and better reflect current design requirements and review procedures.  

In general, the format and overall chapter organization will be the same as the Manual v3.1. There have been no changes to the baseline regulatory requirements or earth disturbance thresholds for regulated Development projects.  Applicants should begin using the new Manual immediately when it is launched. This includes applications for regulated development projects currently undergoing review, as well as voluntary Stormwater Retrofit projects that applied for the FY21 Stormwater Grant Funding cycle.There will be no grandfathering under the existing Manual, with the exception of Expedited PCSMP Review eligibility as discussed above.

October 1, 2020 - COVID-19 Service Updates and Review Delays

Private Development Services staff are continuing to work remotely, though field inspections are continuing at regular intervals. No visitors or in-person deliveries are permitted at our office, and we are not answering our general phone line X-6387. If you need to reach us please email  Applicants should continue to follow the fee and operations and maintenance agreement submission procedure outlined in the May 15th update below. Do to the limited number of PWD staff in our office, we also advise selecting a mail service that does not require signature upon delivery.  All L+I permits should be applied for though eCLIPSE. PWD is still unable to sign-off on paper permit applications. 

Given the delays in review responses, it is recommended applicants submit to PWD for review as early as possible to ensure project schedules can be met.

  • The timeline for Conceptual Stormwater Review currently averages 20-25 calendar days.
  • PCSMP Review is averaging 15-20 calendar days for a review response. 
  • Most expedited PCSMP Reviews are still being completed in five days.

October 1, 2020 - Announcing the 2020 Stormwater Pioneers! 

The Stormwater Pioneers program recognizes the best in Philadelphia stormwater management on private property. Selected projects demonstrate innovation, excellence, the ability to overcome technical challenges, and a true dedication by the property owners, developers, and designers to improving the environment and reducing stormwater runoff. We are pleased to announce the winners of the 2020 Stormwater Pioneers Award: Chaes Food and Birchwood at Cedars Village. This year's awardees were honored for exceptional maintenance of stormwater infrastructure on their properties. You can learn more here

July 23, 2020 - COVID-19 Service Updates, eCLIPSE Instructions, and Pre-Application Meeting Request Form

  • PWD Headquarters (1101 Market Street) Still Closed to General Public. No in-person deliveries - PWD headquarters remains closed to the general public including in person deliveries. Applicants are advised to email with any questions as our entire review staff is still working remotely and will not be answering our office phone lines. Couriers are not permitted in the building. Deliveries (O&M Agreements and review fees) should be sent via FedEx, UPS, or USPS.  See May 15th update below for temporary mailing addresses.. All other documents should be transferred electronically. 
  • Reviews Times are Approaching Normal but Some Processes Still DelayedIn particular, conceptual reviews are running with average review times between 15 -20 days. You can check your project status here
  • Any Zoning, Demolition, Site or Building Permit that requires PWD Sign-Off must be applied for via eCLIPSEPWD is unable to sign-off on paper permit applications while Headquarters remains closed. Applicants with paper permits are advised to contact L+I so they can be converted to the eCLIPSE system. General guidance on PWD reviews in eCLIPSE can be found on L+I's website here.  A more detailed break down of the stormwater portion can be found in this FAQ
  • Introducing the New Electronic Pre-Application Form! This form is recommend for projects that have yet to make an ERSA Application, but wish to meet with PWD virtually in advance of submission to discuss their project. Applicants may also request a joint virtual meeting between PADEP and PWD using the DEP Permit Application Consultation Tool (PACT).    

June 29, 2020 - COVID-19 Service Updates for Plumbing Permits 

Private Development Services continues to be in limited operations with no changes from our May 15, 2020 update. As of June 29, the Muncipal Services Building (MSB) allows in-person buisness transactions by appointment only and PWD has modified the Plumbing Permit Process accordingly. Read more at

June 18, 2020 - New Stormwater Grant Deadline: September 15, 2020 at 8am 

SEPTEMBER 15TH, 2020 AT 8:00 AM

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Stormwater Grants program delayed this year's grant application deadline. Thank you for your patience as the team worked to shift this deadline and associated pre-application meetings. 

We are ready to announce that PWD will have $5 million in Stormwater Grant funding to award this Fall. For basic information on how to develop a competitive application, please refer to page 21 of our Stormwater Grants Application Guide.

As PWD adjusts to this budget reduction, we will be re-imagining how we award grant projects and anticipating a competitive grant award cycle. Please reach out to the Stormwater Incentives group for assistance with interpreting our criteria for a specific project.

All projects intending to apply must:

- Hold a virtual pre-application meeting between the project team, property owner, and Stormwater Incentives by August 14th, 2020. Project teams must bring a conceptual plan for Stormwater Incentives to review. Teams may also bring additional application materials they would like to discuss such as a conceptual budget. 
- Download the Stormwater Grant application from the Stormwater Grants website ("Download Application" button). 
- Submit their applications by Monday, September 15th at 8:00 am. Late or incomplete applications will not be accepted. Please use the "Get ready to apply" and "Common Mistakes" checklists within the Stormwater Grants Application Guide (pages 22-24) before submitting to confirm the project's application is complete and accurate.

Submit Your Application Here

To contact Stormwater Incentives, please email Phone calls will not be answered at this time due to limited office access.

May 15, 2020 - COVID-19 Service Update, Revised Fee Payment Procedure, and new Online Plan Submission Features      

Service Update

Philadelphia Water Department (PWD) Private Development Services is in limited operations with all staff working remotely. No visitors or in-person deliveries are permitted at our office, and we are not answering our general phone line X-6387. Stormwater reviews, as well as most other PWD development reviews, permit issuance, and inspections are continuing but with delays. You may check the status of your stormwater review here. For continued updates on the stormwater regulatory program, please visit General inquires can be sent to

For information on other PWD services, please visit

Revised COVID-19 Fee Payment Procedure  

As a result of the COVID-19 coronavirus crisis, PWD is adjusting procedures for collecting stormwater plan review fees. Continue to make review fees payable to City of Philadelphia, however fee payments should be mailed to the following address for expediated processing:

Philadelphia Water Department

Jefferson Tower

1101 Market Street; 5th Floor

Philadelphia, PA 19107-2994

Attn: Lawrence Yangalay

Fees sent to Private Development Services will still be processed but with delays. Do not resend fees unless instructed to by staff. Operations and Maintenance Agreements and recording fees should continue to be sent to the address specified on the invoice:

Philadelphia Water Department

GSI Implementation Unit

Private Development Services

1101 Market Street; 5th Floor

Philadelphia, PA 19107-2994

You may contact for confirmation that your fee or document has been received. With delays in mail processing, it may take longer than normal to confirm receipt.

New Online Plan Submission Features

Private Development Services has released several new Online Plan Submission features at including:

  • Field Change/Record Drawing Submissions – On the Project Dashboard, there are now designated options for Field Change and Record Drawing submissions.
  • Import Function for Projects –  Individuals who join a project later in the design or construction phase now have an option to “import” a  project that isn’t currently in their dashboard. This feature works for any project whose tracking number begins with ‘FY##-’ and will allow for Field Change and Record Drawing submissions only. Individuals that currently do not have an account at will need to create one to import a project and must also know the project tracking number.  
  • Assorted Files Submission – Allows applicants and property owners to send large files to PWD outside of a review submission. PWD will also use this feature to send large files to applicants and property owners as requested.

Applicants are encouraged to use these new features. Note that on September 1, 2020, online submission will be mandatory for all Record Drawing and Field Changes whose tracking number begins with ‘FY##-’.

We appreciate your patience as we continue to adapt to this new way to doing business. The PWD website will continue to be updated as new information becomes available:

In addition, information and updates from the Philadelphia Health Department about the COVID-19 coronavirus in Philadelphia can be found at  Text COVIDPHL to 888-777 to receive free alerts with information and updates from the Health Department. Information about plans to reopen City offices will be available at   

May 1, 2020 - Resumption of Construction Activities for Private Development 

As of May 1, 2020, some construction projects are able to resume work. Please notify PWD of construction resuming by contacting your PWD inspector or emailing Please refer to the Mayor's Executive Order which details the resumption of construction activity. 

Most other PWD services are unchanged from April 9th, but for the lastest information see

April 9, 2020 - Update on Private Development Services during Philadelphia's COVID19 Response

In response to COVID19, Private Development Services switched to limited operations with the following changes to our program:  

  • Reviews times are delayed. We are still conducting stormwater plan reviews and applicants can make plan submissions online. However, we are unable to meet the standard review timeframes specified in our Manual and delays should be expected. You may check your project status here.  
  • General questions and meeting requests should be sent to the general email account. To ensure a timely response, please email Direct phone calls with staff are not available. Walk-In Hours and in person meetings are suspended, but Applicants may arrange conference calls or web-based meetings using their software platforms. 
  • PWD’s office is closed to in-person deliveries. Review fees and project documents may still be mailed. Once normal operations resume, we will confirm receipt of mailed items and follow-up regarding missing information. Before mailing items (e.g. Review Fees, executed Conditional Approval letter, and/or executed Operations & Maintenance Agreement), provide a scanned copy and proof of mailing by email. Your reviewer will provide these instructions or you may reach out to Applicants that do not provide the required information will be subject to enforcement actions. 
  • Notify PWD of construction waivers. We are aware that some projects have obtained waivers to continue construction. Please email to ensure required inspection of E&S controls and SMPs.  
  • Constructed SMPs should be maintained to prevent system failure. Contact if you have questions about performing maintenance at your site.Private Development Services is actively mobilizing more staff for remote work. Your patience is appreciated during this time. 

Private Development Services is actively mobilizing more staff for remote work. Your patience is appreciated during this time. For the lastest information stay subscribed or join our mailing list

Other PWD development services programs with limited operations:  

  • Utility Plan Review: Reviews are ongoing, but expect delays. Contact:
  • Private Cost Review: Reviews are ongoing, but expect delays. Contact:  
  • Act 537- Sewage Facilities Planning: Reviews are ongoing, but expect delays. Follow instructions on the mailer for emailing exemption requests. 
  • Water and Sewer availability for Building Permit Sign-Off: Sign-off is being completed via eCLIPSE. Sign-off on paper permits and pre-permits is suspended. 
  • Flow Test Requests: New flow tests are suspended. Requests for existing flow test data are available. Contact: 
  • One Call: One Call requests are being processed. 

PWD has also developed an emergency water service and lateral repair permit process.Read this for more information on PWD's response to COVID-19. 

Information and updates from the Philadelphia Health Department about the COVID-19 coronavirus in Philadelphia can be found here. In addition, text COVIDPHL to 888-777 to receive free alerts with information and updates from the Health Department. Information about plans to reopen City offices will be available at

March 27, 2020 - COVID19 Response Private Development Services Limiting Operations  

In response to COVID19, all non-essential city services will halt until at least March 27, 2020 and Private Development Services will be switching to limit operations. During this time applicants will have access to resources and be able to set up new accounts and submit reviews through the Project Dashboard at Applicants are encouraged to email any questions to as not all staff will be working during this period. We will not be answering phone calls to our office line (215-685-6387) nor will visitors be permitted to hand deliver fees or documents. All on-site meetings are being suspended including Walk-In Hours.  

Due to staffing limitations, please expect delays in review times and responses.

Concerning other PWD development reviews, including Utility Plan Review, Private Cost Review, Water Transport Records, and Sewage Facilities Planning, please contact those units directly with any questions.

Private Development Services is continuing to learn more about our work capacity as the City of Philadelphia responds to the COVID-19 pandemic. Please check for the latest information and stay subscribed or join this mailing list.     

September 24, 2019 – Introducing the New!

The new is now live! Be sure to check out the following features including:

  • Online Post-Construction Stormwater Management Plan (PCSMP) "Technical" Submission
    • The PCSMP/Technical submission can now be made online including pdf plan uploads. Applicants no longer need to make hard copy PCSMP submissions or resubmissions. Hard copies will no longer be accepted as of January 1, 2020.
      • Note that fees and executed Operations and Maintenance Agreements must still be mailed or hand delivered to PWD. This includes the initial PCSMP submission fee to begin the PCSMP Review
  • New standardized Maintenance Guide to replace existing Operations and Maintenance Schedules
    • Maintenance Guide SMP Forms detailing the maintenance activities and the frequency with which these should be performed as well as a log to track the maintenance of these features.
    • Maintenance Guide Site Map showing the location of the specific features that will need to be maintained will be included. Customized Maintenance Guides will be a requirement for all new PCSMPs beginning January 1, 2020.
  • Revamped ERSA Application to accommodate Green Roof Density Bonus Projects
    • The ERSA application has been revised to accommodate projects seeking a Green Roof Density Bonus. Applicants will be able to upload the required additional documents and no-longer need to submit additional plans and worksheets separately.
  • Online Conceptual Stormwater Management Plan Resubmission
    • Conceptual Plan resubmissions can now be made online in the Project Dashboard where initial ERSA applications are submitted. The Project Dashboard must be used for all resubmissions beginning January 1, 2020.
  • New Website Content! In addition to expanding online submission capabilities, the website now includes:
    • Guidance targeted to the entire project life cycle including a dedicated page about the long-term maintenance of stormwater management practices.
    • Direct links to other PWD Unit’s websites and review process information including Utility Plan Review.
    • Expanded Project Dashboard features to assist firms in managing multiple submissions
    • Condensed Resource Guide, and more!

January  14, 2019 - Private Development Services Programmatic Updates

Over the past few months a number of administrative updates were made to Private Development Services. Here’s a quick summary:

  • Online Technical Worksheet -  On 10/1/2018 PWD introduced a new Online Technical Worksheet to replace the existing excel based worksheets 2 & 3. The Worksheet can be accessed in the Project Portal, the same location where ERSA applications are submitted. 
  • New Fee Schedule - effective 10/1/2018, all projects submitted to PWD for stormwater management approval shall be subject to the following fee schedule:
    • $840 - Conceptual Stormwater Management Plan Approval Fee due prior to issuance of the Conceptual Stormwater Management Plan Approval.   
    • $285 - PCSMP Submission Fee due upon submission of a PCSMP.  
    • $130/hour - PCSMP Hourly Review Fee due prior to issuance of the PCSMP Approval. Note that PCSMP resubmissions and Field Change submissions received on or after October 1, 2018 will be billed at the new PCSMP Hourly Review Fee rate. 
    • Stormwater Management Fee in Lieu will be calculated at $10/square foot.
  • New Mailing Address and Plan Drop Off Location – All mail including review fees, plan review submissions, construction documentation, and post-construction maintenance information should be hand delivered or mailed to the following address.

Philadelphia Water Department

GSI Implementation Unit

Private Development Services

1101 Market Street

5th Floor

Philadelphia, PA 19107


  • Daily Project Status Updates: New for 2019, project review statuses will be updated daily and can be accessed here.
  • Change in E&S Review Procedure: Projects in the Development Exemption and Demolition review paths that exceed 15,000 square feet in total earth disturbance will have their Erosion & Sediment (E&S) Control Plans reviewed during the Conceptual Review Phase. A separate E&S review step will no longer be required. Projects that fall into this category should include complete E&S plans with details and standard notes in their ERSA Application.
  • Translated Factsheets:  PWD has translated several factsheets into Spanish. Individual factsheets can be viewed on the Development Resources page. Request to translate other resources or documents into other languages can be sent to   

July 2, 2018 - Philadelphia Water Department Stormwater Regulations Update

Effective July 2, 2018, the Philadelphia Water Department updated its Stormwater Regulations for how streets are regulated. These changes are intended to better align PWD with the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection and improve consistency and transparency in determining project applicability.

What are the specific updates?

  • Street Maintenance activities no longer count towards the regulatory earth disturbance threshold. Applicants can exclude disturbance activities associated with Street Maintenance from their limit of disturbance total for triggering the PWD Stormwater Regulations. Examples of Street Maintenance Activity include sidewalk replacement, streetscaping improvements, curb cuts, and utility connections. These examples and additional details are provided in the Stormwater Management Guidance Manual Version 3.1.
  • New Streets are required to meet the Water Quality Requirement. Development projects that propose a new Street are required to manage the runoff from the Street in a stormwater management practice (SMP) on the development site.

What else changed?
In addition to this regulatory change, PWD updated its existing resources to improve how we work with the development community.

  • Philadelphia Stormwater Management Guidance Manual, Version 3.1An updated version of the Manual was released to clarify existing policies, procedures, and requirements from Version 3.0. In addition, Version 3.1 incorporates new content including a discussion of the regulatory update, revised porous pavement guidance, updated graphics and new One-Sheets, additional stormwater management design examples, and other clarifying edits. Designers should begin using Version 3.1 immediately for all projects regardless of their status.
  • Updated Online Project PortalThe online log-in feature has been updated to allow design firms and individual designers to manage multiple projects from one location as well as access the new Online Technical Worksheet.
  • New Online Technical WorksheetPWD has released a new online logic-based form to replace the existing Excel-based technical worksheets. Applicants are encouraged to utilize the Online Technical Worksheet now; however, there will be a three-month transition period before PWD will require the online worksheet as part of all new Post-Construction Stormwater Management Plan (PCSMP) Submissions. The current Excel-based forms will be discontinued on October 1, 2018.  

Want More Information?

PWD is hosting an information session to review the proposed changes and to provide a tutorial of the Online Technical Worksheet and Project Portal:

Information Session

Tuesday, July 10, 2018 at 1:00 PM

1101 Market Street, 5th Floor

Philadelphia, PA 19107

RSVP is required as space is limited. RSVP to

For the latest news, be sure to subscribe to the Philadelphia Water Department Stormwater Regulations email updates!

July 8, 2016 - Green Roof Density Bonus

On December 23, 2015, The Philadelphia Zoning Code was amended to offer exceptions to some residential density rules when a development project includes a green roof that meets certain criteria. If these criteria are met, a density "bonus" will allow for the development of additional residential units in areas where such development would normally be restricted. Zoning districts eligible for the density bonus include RM-1 and CMX-2. To determine if your development qualifies for the Green Roof Density Bonus, please refer to the conditions outlined in Section 14-602.7 of the Philadelphia Zoning Code ("Exception to Use Tables for Green Roofs"). Development projects applying for the bonus must obtain PWD review, as specified in PWD's Green Roof Density Bonus Factsheet.

Why Should I Apply?

This change to the Zoning Code provides a benefit to the developer by offering an opportunity to construct additional units while also incentivizing the utilization of green roofs in development projects. Developers who construct green roofs as a part of their development may be eligible to apply for tax breaks to reduce the cost of green roof installation.

Green roofs deliver numerous triple bottom line benefits:

  • Stormwater management - Not only aiding the developer in meeting the City's Stormwater Regulations but also reducing pollutants reaching the City's waterways
  • Reduced heat island effect
  • Improved air quality
  • Increased green jobs
  • Reduced costs to the owner due to extended roof life and improved insulation for both heating and cooling

The amendment to the Zoning Code and PWD's application requirements for the Green Roof Density Bonus can be referenced below:

July 1, 2015 – The Philadelphia Water Department's Stormwater Regulations Update

Effective July 1, 2015, the Philadelphia Water Department updated its Stormwater Regulations for development to meet requirements of the Clean Water Act. The changes will improve the health of Philadelphia’s rivers, minimize local flooding, and encourage the use of green infrastructure throughout the city. The revised Stormwater Management Guidance Manual, Version 3.0 contains policies and procedures that reflect the new Stormwater Regulation requirements and offers enhanced resources to the development community with respect to stormwater management.

Which Stormwater Regulations apply to your project?

Projects that submit a complete Existing Resources and Site Analysis (ERSA) Application to PWD prior to July 1, 2015 will be eligible to meet the current Stormwater Regulations. Projects submitting ERSA Applications on July 1 or later will be required to meet the updated Stormwater Regulations.

What do the July 2015 Stormwater Regulations achieve?

  • Manage more water. Each development project will hold more water on site.
  • Slow water entering sewers. The rate of stormwater entering the sewer system will be slower.
  • Cleaner water entering sewers. Each site will filter the dirtiest stormwater running off the site.

What else is changing?

As we updated the Stormwater Regulations, the Philadelphia Water Department also improved how we work with the development community.

Our customers can expect:

  • Faster project approvals. A new expedited, 5-day review for surface green stormwater infrastructure.
  • Clear application resources. Simplified ERSA Application and worksheets to improve submissions.
  • Accessible information. Online, user-friendly Guidance Manual and new Stormwater Plan Review website.

Summary of Regulatory and Technical Changes:

Acceptable Non-Infiltrating Pollutant-Reducing Practices
  Section Combined Sewer Area Separate Sewer Area or Direct Discharge
Bioretention 4.1 Yes Yes
Porous Pavement DIC 4.2 Yes Yes
Green Roofs 4.3 Yes Yes
Cisterns 4.5 Yes Yes
Blue Roofs 4.6 Yes No
Ponds and Wet Basins 4.7 Yes Yes
Vegetated Media Filters 4.9 Yes Yes
Media Filters 4.9 Yes Yes
Roof Runoff Isolation* 3.2.4 Yes No

*Roof runoff isolation is the routing of runoff from non-vehicular roof area that is not commingled with untreated runoff. The designer is referred to Section 3.2.4 for more information.

For more detailed information about the changes and our outreach to the development community, visit