Baldwin County

Coastal Area Program

The Baldwin County Coastal Area Program, a division of the Baldwin County Building Department, is responsible for permitting, regulating, monitoring, and inspecting certain regulated activities within the Coastal Area of the Baldwin County building permit jurisdiction. 

Coastal Area Program Permit Information

Construction and development activities along the Fort Morgan beach and dunes on properties (within the Baldwin County building permit jurisdiction) that are intersected by or seaward of the Coastal Construction Line (CCL) must be permitted through the Coastal Area Program to ensure that the work is consistent with the Alabama Department of Environmental Management (ADEM) Division 8 Coastal Program regulations and also compliant with the Baldwin County Beach and Dune Protection and Management regulations (Resolution # 2015-011). 

You may apply for the Coastal Area Program Permit in the Citizenserve Portal at Register or login to get started. Click on the HOME link at the top, then click on the blue Building Department button. Choose the permit type of Coastal Area Program Permit. 

Coastal Area Program Permit Application and Checklist

For question or concerns regarding the Coastal Area Program permitting process, you may contact the Coastal Area Program Coordinator, Janie Joiner, at or at 251.972.6837.

Information Specific to Dune Walkovers

A dune walkover is a raised walkway constructed for the purpose of protecting the beach and dune system between mean high tide and the construction control (CCL) line from damage that may result from anticipated pedestrian traffic to the beach, and which is no more than six (6) feet in width for multiple family/commercial/public structures, no more than four (4) feet in width for single family/two family structures, constructed without roof or walls, elevated at least one (1) foot above the dune, and extends seaward of the vegetation line.

A dune walkover shall be constructed to the following standards:

A. There shall be no more than one (1) dune walkover per parcel.

B. Dune walkovers shall begin at the existing ground level elevation of the principal landward structure.

C. The maximum width of the dune walkover structure shall be no more than four (4) feet for single family/two family structures and no more than six (6) feet for multiple family/commercial/public structures. Maximum widths shall be applicable to all sections of the dune walkover structure, including but not limited to steps, ramps, landings and decks.

D. The elevation from the bottom of floor joists of the dune walkover shall be no less than one (1) foot and no more than three (3) feet above the maximum elevation of the dune system being traversed.

E. No vertical or horizontal structures shall be allowed above thirty-eight (38) inches from the walking surface, i.e., roofs, walls, pergolas, etc.

F. Handrails, if any, shall be no higher than thirty-six (36) to thirty-eight (38) inches above the walking service for Single- and Two-Family Dwellings.

G. The dune walkover shall terminate ten (10) feet seaward of the vegetative line of the dune.

H. The location and length of the dune walkover is to be coordinated through and approved by the delegated authority of the Alabama Department of Environmental Management (ADEM) and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

I. No lighting shall be utilized on a dune walkover.

J. No dune walkover construction shall occur during the sea turtle nesting season from May 1 through November 1.

The survey submitted for review should show all existing and proposed structures as well as all construction details for the proposed dune walkover. It should include the height, width, and length of the walkover, dune height, vegetation line, and construction control line (CCL).

Water Quality

Baldwin County partners with the Alabama Department of Environmental Management (ADEM) and the Alabama Department of Public Health (ADPH) to routinely monitor bacteria levels at certain locations within the unincorporated areas of the county. The ADEM/ADPH Coastal Alabama Beach Monitoring Program utilizes a three tiered color coded water quality status system to help the public make a more informed decision concerning water quality and risk of illness associated with swimming:

Indicates that, based on the most recent test, water quality is acceptable. Enterococci levels were at or below the EPA threshold of 104 colonies per 100 milliliters of water.

Indicates the most recent test results for a given site exceeded the EPA threshold of 104 Enterococci colonies per 100 milliliters of water. There may be an increased risk of illness associated with swimming in such water. Because elevated bacteria levels are often transient and usually fall quickly, these sites undergo immediate retesting. The yellow status will be revised to red or green based on the results of the retest.

Indicates that repeat testing of a site has again revealed bacteria levels over the EPA threshold of 104 Enterococci colonies per 100 milliliters of water. There may be an increased risk of illness associated with swimming in such water. Because elevated bacteria levels have persisted, a public health advisory has been issued.

The Coastal Beach Monitoring Map allows you to view the current advisory status and all recent testing results. Click on the location symbol on the map. Then click the "Click here for results' in the pop-up to download the data for that location. You may also click on "Summary beach data" link at the top of the map webpage. For more information on the Coastal Beach Monitoring Program, click here.

Baldwin County Seal White

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