Obtaining a Wetland Permit

Any activity proposed within 100 feet of Wetland Resource Areas (wetlands, ponds, intermittent streams) or 200 feet from perennial (year-round) streams must be reviewed and permitted by the Natick Conservation Commission (NCC) under State and local laws.

In addition, the NCC enforces:

  • A 25-foot No Disturbance Zone from all Wetland Resource Areas in which no activities or work can occur including dumping of grass clippings and disturbance of existing vegetation.
  • A 40-foot No Build Zone from all Wetland Resource Areas in which no structures are allowed to be placed or constructed such as sheds.

You can visit the Town's mapping website to see if your property contains or is near Wetland Resource Areas. Search by address using the search bar in the top right corner of the page, and use the "Themes" button just under the search bar to toggle "Natick Town Wetlands" layer on. 

Process and Public Hearing

  1. Review the information included on this page to determine what permit you will need. If you need assistance, call the Community & Economic Development office at 508-647-6452.
  2. Review the MA Wetlands Protection Act and the Natick Wetlands Bylaw and its Regulations
  3. Submit one hard copy and one digital copy of the completed application to the Community & Economic Development office 16 days prior to an NCC meeting. The NCC meets the 1st and 3rd Thursday of every month at 7 PM. A full list of meeting schedules, application deadlines, and revised materials submission deadlines is available here.
  4. Attend one or more scheduled NCC meetings to present your application. Sometimes the NCC can make a decision in one night. Other times they may request additional information or want to conduct a site visit and will continue your application to a future date. 
  5. Receive a decision from the NCC. If a permit is issued, be sure to read through the entire permit you receive and pay attention to any conditions you are required to abide by!

Request for Determination of Applicability (RDA)
This application is for minor projects affecting a small portion of a Buffer Zone that will not have a negative impact on the Wetland Resource Areas. An RDA is essentially requesting the NCC to make a determination if the proposed work is subject to a larger wetlands permit process (known as a Notice of Intent and described below).

Filing fees for RDAs are $100 per application. The RDA also needs to be advertised in the newspaper (the Community Development office will take care of this). Make sure you send your application and materials to MassDEP at 205B Lowell Street, Wilmington, MA 01887.

The NCC will either issue a Negative RDA (don't let the name fool you, this is a good thing!) or a Positive RDA (you will need to submit a Notice of Intent application).

MassDEP RDA information and application
RDA checklist
Filing fees form

Notice of Intent (NOI)
This application is for larger projects that could have a more significant impact on Wetland Resource Areas and the environment. These involve more detailed engineered plans and a more stringent review.

Filing fees for NOIs vary depending on the proposed project. NOIs require notice to abutters within 100 feet of the project. Proof of mailing is required to be submitted at the application's first public hearing. The NOI also needs to be advertised in the newspaper (the Community Development office will take care of this). Make sure you send your application and materials to MassDEP.

If approved, the NCC will issue an Order of Conditions (OOC) - a wetlands permit requiring general and special conditions to be met pre-construction, during construction, and post-construction. Some of the conditions are in perpetuity so it is of utmost importance to read through your OOC!

MassDEP NOI information and application 
NOI checklist
Abutter Information
Filing fees form