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Division of Land Use Regulation
State of New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection

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GENERAL PERMIT 15 – construction of piers, docks including jet ski ramps, pilings and boatlifts in man-made lagoons

General Permit 15 authorizes construction of construction of piers, docks including jet ski ramps, pilings and boatlifts in man-made lagoons, provided:

  • The structures are located on individual single-family or duplex lots and are for recreational or noncommercial use;
  • The structures do not extend beyond a distance of 20% of the width of a man-made lagoon;
  • The width of the dock/pier does not exceed twice the clearance between the structure and the surface of the ground below or the water surface at mean high water, except for floating docks.
    • For example, an 8’ wide dock must be elevated a minimum of 4’ above the water surface at mean high water;
  • The maximum width of the structure is 8’;
  • Where crossing wetlands, the proposed structure is constructed perpendicular to the shoreline and does not exceed 6’ in width;
  • Jet ski ramps do not exceed 8’ in width;
  • The height of the structure over wetlands is a minimum of 4’;
  • Any wetlands disturbed during construction are restored to pre-project conditions;
  • The proposed structures do not hinder navigation or access;
  • A minimum of 8’ of open water is provided between any docks if the combined width of any existing or proposed docks over the water exceeds 8’;
  • Construction and placement of dock is a minimum of 4’ from all property lines for docks which are perpendicular to the adjacent bulkhead or shoreline; and
  • Space between horizontal planking is maximized and width of horizontal planking is minimized to the maximum extent practicable.

Please be advised:

  • An alternative dock design which allows for sunlight penetration equal to or greater than that allowed by the spacing of planking described at N.J.A.C. 7:7-6.15(a)9 is also acceptable.
  • For sites which have existing dock structures exceeding 8’ in width over water areas and/or wetlands, which were constructed prior to September 1978 and for which the applicant proposes to increase the coverage over the water area or wetland by increasing the number or size of boat slips, docks or piers, the existing oversized structures shall be reduced to a maximum of 8’ in width.

Full details are provided at N.J.A.C.7:7-6.15

If your project does not meet the requirements of the General Permit 15, it may qualify for another General Permit, Permit-by-rule, or an Individual Permit.  Additional information on these permit types can be found on the Coastal Permitting page.

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Last Updated: July 13, 2015