Public Notice


Published April 13, 2016
Expiration date: 5/13/2016

DISCLAIMER: Please download the attached PDF version of this notice for complete information, proper formatting, and inclusion of tables and figures.


Issue Date: April 13, 2016

Comment Deadline: May 13, 2016

Corps Action ID Number: SAW-2007-00530

The Wilmington District, Corps of Engineers (Corps) received an application from Funston Land & Timber, LLC seeking Department of the Army authorization to place fill material in 0.311-acre of non-tidal wetlands, 174 linear feet of jurisdictional tributaries, and 368 linear feet (0.03-acre) of jurisdictional ditch, associated with proposed construction of a mixed-use residential/commercial development, known as Brunswick Forest, in Leland, Brunswick County, North Carolina.

Specific plans and location information are described below and shown on the attached plans. This Public Notice and all attached plans are also available on the Wilmington District Web Site at:

Applicant: Funston Land and Timber, LLC

c/o Jeff Earp

1007 Evangeline Drive

Leland, North Carolina 28451

AGENT (if applicable): Kim Williams

Land Management Group, Inc.

3805 Wrightsville Avenue, Suite 15

Wilmington, North Carolina 28403


The Corps evaluates this application and decides whether to issue, conditionally issue, or deny the proposed work pursuant to applicable procedures of the following Statutory Authorities:

X - Section 404 of the Clean Water Act (33 U.S.C. 1344)

   - Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899 (33 U.S.C. 403)

   - Section 103 of the Marine Protection, Research and Sanctuaries Act of 1972 (33 U.S.C. 1413)


Directions to Site: Brunswick Forest is located along the southern intersection of U.S. Route 17 and Brunswick Forest Parkway, in Leland, Brunswick County, North Carolina. Phases 7, 8, and 9 are located on the west side of the Sunny Point Railroad right-of-way(ROW), while Phase 3 is located west of the railroad ROW in the southern portion of the overall development, and Phase 5 is located on the east side of the Carolina Power and Light ROW.

Project Area (acres): 2,776-acres                            Nearest Town: Leland

Nearest Waterway: Town Creek                              River Basin: Cape Fear

Latitude and Longitude: 34.178294 N, -78.040847 W

Existing Site Conditions

The project site consists of developed and undeveloped portions of Phases 3 and 5 and undeveloped Phases 7, 8, and 9 of Brunswick Forest. Much of the site was previously a pine plantation. Construction of a planned unit development began in the early 2000's, with several phases currently complete. The Brunswick Forest development consists of a mix of residential and commercial development, golf course, 745-acres of passive open space, 62-acres of active open-space (parks) and trails, internal roadways, and stormwater management facilities. The site is a mix of uplands and wetlands, with the entire Brunswick Forest site containing approximately 1,200-acres of wetlands. Phases 7, 8, and 9 consist of undeveloped forested uplands and wetlands, while Phases 3 and 5 contain residential development with associated infrastructure and undeveloped, forested uplands and wetlands. The project area is bordered by U.S. Route 17 to the north and undeveloped, forested land to the south, east, and west.

Previous Department of the Army actions within Brunswick Forest include the following:

SAW-2001-01122 - original jurisdictional determination (JD) for 911-acres;

SAW-2007-00530 - Nationwide Permit (NWP) 29 for Phases 3 & 5 issued March 3, 2009, a NWP 29 issued on January 22, 2014 for Phase 1, and a NWP 29 issued on November 10, 2014 for Phase 3; updated JDs were issued March 24, 2008, October 24, 2008, October 26, 2010 for Phases 2, 4, 6, & 7, and June 29, 2015 to reverify wetlands on Phases 3 & 5;

SAW-2010-00235 - NWP 36/CAMA Major Permit issued March 4, 2010 for a boat ramp on Town Creek.

In addition to the issued permits listed above, there were two non-reporting NWP 39s for road crossings constructed in 2005.

Applicant’s Stated Purpose

The basic project purpose is to construct phased residential development. The overall project purpose is to continue construction of residential development within Phases 3, 5, 7, 8, and 9 of Brunswick Forest, Leland, Brunswick County, NC.

Project Description

The project involves the placement of fill in 0.311-acre of palustrine, forested wetlands, 174 linear feet (115 linear feet of new impact and 59 linear feet of existing culverts) of jurisdictional streams, and 0.03-acre of a jurisdictional ditch, to construct a residential development with internal roadways, utilities, stormwater management facilities, and landscaping.

Avoidance and Minimization

The applicant provided the following information in support of efforts to avoid and/or minimize impacts to the aquatic environment: The applicant has reduced impacts to jurisdictional waters of the U.S., including wetlands, to the maximum extent practicable. Original project impacts were to 0.47-acre of wetlands and 188 linear feet of streams. Utilization of vertical headwalls at road crossings instead of sloped fill resulted in a reduction of 0.16-acre of permanent impacts to wetlands and 14 linear feet of streams. In addition, where feasible, road crossings were oriented/located in areas where culverts currently exist to further minimize permanent project impacts.

Compensatory Mitigation

The applicant offered the following compensatory mitigation plan to offset unavoidable functional loss to the aquatic environment: To offset unavoidable permanent project impacts to 0.311-acre of non-tidal wetlands and 115 linear feet of streams, the applicant proposes to purchase mitigation bank credits from the Lower Cape Fear Umbrella Mitigation Bank. It should be noted that previously permitted unavoidable project impacts were mitigated through mitigation bank credit purchases and on-site preservation of wetlands.

Essential Fish Habitat

Pursuant to the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, this Public Notice initiates the Essential Fish Habitat (EFH) consultation requirements. The Corps’ initial determination is that the proposed project would not effect EFH or associated fisheries managed by the South Atlantic or Mid Atlantic Fishery Management Councils or the National Marine Fisheries Service.

Cultural Resources

Pursuant to Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, Appendix C of 33 CFR Part 325, and the 2005 Revised Interim Guidance for Implementing Appendix C, the District Engineer consulted district files and records and the latest published version of the National Register of Historic Places and initially determines that:

   - Should historic properties, or properties eligible for inclusion in the National Register, be present within the Corps’ permit area; the proposed activity requiring the DA permit (the undertaking) is a type of activity that will have no potential to cause an effect to an historic properties.

X - No historic properties, nor properties eligible for inclusion in the National Register, are present within the Corps’ permit area; therefore, there will be no historic properties affected. The Corps subsequently requests concurrence from the SHPO (or THPO).

   - Properties ineligible for inclusion in the National Register are present within the Corps’ permit area; there will be no historic properties affected by the proposed work. The Corps subsequently requests concurrence from the SHPO (or THPO).

   - Historic properties, or properties eligible for inclusion in the National Register, are present within the Corps’ permit area; however, the undertaking will have no adverse effect on these historic properties. The Corps subsequently requests concurrence from the SHPO (or THPO).

   - Historic properties, or properties eligible for inclusion in the National Register, are present within the Corps’ permit area; moreover, the undertaking may have an adverse effect on these historic properties. The Corps subsequently initiates consultation with the SHPO (or THPO).

   - The proposed work takes place in an area known to have the potential for the presence of prehistoric and historic cultural resources; however, the area has not been formally surveyed for the presence of cultural resources. No sites eligible for inclusion in the National Register of Historic Places are known to be present in the vicinity of the proposed work. Additional work may be necessary to identify and assess any historic or prehistoric resources that may be present.

The District Engineer’s final eligibility and effect determination will be based upon coordination with the SHPO and/or THPO, as appropriate and required, and with full consideration given to the proposed undertaking’s potential direct and indirect effects on historic properties within the Corps-indentified permit area.

Endangered Species

Pursuant to the Endangered Species Act of 1973, the Corps reviewed the project area, examined all information provided by the applicant and consulted the latest North Carolina Natural Heritage Database. Based on available information:

   - The Corps determines that the proposed project would not affect federally listed endangered or threatened species or their formally designated critical habitat.

   - The Corps determines that the proposed project may affect federally listed endangered or threatened species or their formally designated critical habitat. The Corps initiates consultation under Section 7 of the ESA and will not make a permit decision until the consultation process is complete.

X - The Corps is not aware of the presence of species listed as threatened or endangered or their critical habitat formally designated pursuant to the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (ESA) within the project area. The Corps will make a final determination on the effects of the proposed project upon additional review of the project and completion of any necessary biological assessment and/or consultation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and/or National Marine Fisheries Service.

Other Required Authorizations

The Corps forwards this notice and all applicable application materials to the appropriate State agencies for review.

North Carolina Division of Water Resources (NCDWR): The Corps will generally not make a final permit decision until the NCDWR issues, denies, or waives the state Certification as required by Section 401 of the Clean Water Act (PL 92-500). The receipt of the application and this public notice, combined with the appropriate application fee, at the NCDWR Central Office in Raleigh constitutes initial receipt of an application for a 401 Certification. A waiver will be deemed to occur if the NCDWR fails to act on this request for certification within sixty days of receipt of a complete application. Additional information regarding the 401 Certification may be reviewed at the NCDWR Central Office, 401 and Buffer Permitting Unit, 512 North Salisbury Street, Raleigh, North Carolina 27604-2260. All persons desiring to make comments regarding the application for a 401 Certification should do so, in writing, by to:

NCDWR Central Office

Attention: Ms. Karen Higgins, 401 and Buffer Permitting Unit

(USPS mailing address): 1650 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, NC 27699-1650


(physical address): 512 North Salisbury Street, Raleigh, North Carolina 27604

North Carolina Division of Coastal Management (NCDCM):

X - The application did not include a certification that the proposed work complies with and would be conducted in a manner that is consistent with the approved North Carolina Coastal Zone Management Program. Pursuant to 33 CFR 325.2 (b)(2) the Corps cannot issue a Department of Army (DA) permit for the proposed work until the applicant submits such a certification to the Corps and the NCDCM, and the NCDCM notifies the Corps that it concurs with the applicant’s consistency certification. As the application did not include the consistency certification, the Corps will request, upon receipt,, concurrence or objection from the NCDCM.

   - Based upon all available information, the Corps determines that this application for a Department of Army (DA) permit does not involve an activity which would affect the coastal zone, which is defined by the Coastal Zone Management (CZM) Act (16 U.S.C. § 1453).


The decision whether to issue a permit will be based on an evaluation of the probable impacts including cumulative impacts of the proposed activity on the public interest. That decision will reflect the national concern for both protection and utilization of important resources. The benefit which reasonably may be expected to accrue from the proposal must be balanced against its reasonably foreseeable detriments. All factors which may be relevant to the proposal will be considered including the cumulative effects thereof; among those are conservation, economics, aesthetics, general environmental concerns, wetlands, historic properties, fish and wildlife values, flood hazards, flood plain values (in accordance with Executive Order 11988), land use, navigation, shoreline erosion and accretion, recreation, water supply and conservation, water quality, energy needs, safety, food and fiber production, mineral needs, considerations of property ownership, and, in general, the needs and welfare of the people. For activities involving the discharge of dredged or fill materials in waters of the United States, the evaluation of the impact of the activity on the public interest will include application of the Environmental Protection Agency’s 404(b)(1) guidelines.

Commenting Information

The Corps of Engineers is soliciting comments from the public; Federal, State and local agencies and officials, including any consolidated State Viewpoint or written position of the Governor; Indian Tribes and other interested parties in order to consider and evaluate the impacts of this proposed activity. Any comments received will be considered by the Corps of Engineers to determine whether to issue, modify, condition or deny a permit for this proposal. To make this decision, comments are used to assess impacts on endangered species, historic properties, water quality, general environmental effects and the other public interest factors listed above. Comments are used in the preparation of an Environmental Assessment (EA) and/or an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). Comments are also used to determine the need for a public hearing and to determine the overall public interest of the proposed activity.

Any person may request, in writing, within the comment period specified in this notice, that a public hearing be held to consider the application. Requests for public hearings shall state, with particularity, the reasons for holding a public hearing. Requests for a public hearing shall be granted, unless the District Engineer determines that the issues raised are insubstantial or there is otherwise no valid interest to be served by a hearing.

The Corps of Engineers, Wilmington District will receive written comments pertinent to the proposed work, as outlined above, until 5pm, May 13, 2016. Comments should be submitted to John N. Policarpo, Wilmington Regulatory Field Office, 69 Darlington Avenue, Wilmington, North Carolina 28403 , at (910) 251-4487. 

DISCLAIMER: Please download the attached PDF version of this notice for complete information, proper formatting, and inclusion of tables and figures.