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Swimming Pool Zoning Laws and Fencing Requirements Alpine Borough, Bergen County

June 11, 2018

Updated as of June 2018

Permit Required

No person shall construct, maintain or operate within the borough any private open swimming pool, portable or permanent, or wading pool until a permit shall have been obtained in accordance with this chapter. This chapter shall not govern or regulate a portable wading pool, provided that all parts for such pool are portable and no part of it is permanently installed.


As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:


Any pool designed, used and maintained for swimming purposes by any individual for use by his household and guests and located on a lot as an accessory use for a residence.


Any artificially constructed pool, not designed or used for swimming, with an area not exceeding 120 square feet and a maximum depth not exceeding 15 inches.


  1. An application for a permit to construct a private swimming pool or wading pool shall be made to the Construction Official and the Board of Health, and shall include final plans and specifications essentially comprised of the following data:
  2. Detailed plot plan of the entire property, showing the accurate location of existing buildings and the proposed pool, together with proposed bath houses or cabanas, drawn to scale, with pertinent dimensions and grade elevations shown in figures at pool, building and property lines. The plot plan shall show the location, height and type of all proposed fencing or enclosure as herein below required around the pool.
  3. Pool layout, construction and dimensions, including piping arrangement, pumps and all other pool appurtenances.
  4. Details and specifications for water treatment units, with operating instructions thereto.
  5. Details of disposal facilities for filter waste water and provisions for emptying the pool.
  6. Specifications for construction of the pool shall accompany all detailed plans and final reports. The plot plan shall be signed by the owner or his agent and a duly licensed engineer or registered architect or land surveyor of New Jersey.
  7. No permit for a private swimming pool or wading pool shall be issued by the Construction Official until the plans, specifications and plot plans have been approved by the Borough Engineer and a plumbing permit issued by the Board of Health of the borough, and such approval has been properly certified on the plans. The application shall be forwarded by the Construction Official to the Board of Health and the Borough Engineer for approval. Approval or rejection shall be made in writing within 10 days from the date of application to the Construction Official.

198-4Permit fee.

[Amended by Ord. No. 306; Ord. No. 362]

A fee of $200 shall be paid to the borough for a private swimming pool or wading pool permit. Such fee shall be exclusive of the building permit fee required for erection of the pool and any accessory structure to be used in connection therewith under the building code of the borough. The fee shall be paid to the Borough Clerk prior to the time application to the Construction Official is made. The fee shall cover the cost of processing the application and will not be refunded in the event of rejection by a borough official.


No private swimming pool or wading pool shall be erected nearer to a street property line or nearer to a side or rear property line than herein set forth for the respective zoning districts as follows:


  1. In all residence districts, street and lot line setbacks shall be in accordance with Chapter 220, Zoning, which may be amended at future times to regulate buildings and structures according to their construction and the nature and extent of the use of land.
  2. In business districts, minimum setback from the street right-of-way line shall be 20 feet; minimum setback from the side property line shall be 20 feet; and minimum setback from the rear property line shall be 20 feet.

198-6Construction and maintenance.

  1. Standards for construction and maintenance. All material used in the construction of private swimming pools and wading pools shall be waterproof and easily cleaned. Uncovered sand or earth bottoms shall not be permitted. The construction and design of the pools shall be such that they may be maintained and operated so as to be clean and sanitary at all times. The owners of every private swimming pool or wading pool shall be responsible for maintaining the pool in such condition so as to prevent breaks in the pool chassis or water from the pool overflowing into adjacent property, private or public. The immediate area surrounding the pool shall be designed to slope away from the pool so that all surface water will drain away from the pool.
  2. Height of pool. The top of the peripheral walls of the pool shall at no point be more than five feet above the natural elevation of the land and no more than 30% (based on the linear peripheral measurements) of such walls shall extend more than three feet above the natural elevation of the land.

[Amended by Ord. No. 165]

  1. Extending from the top of the wall which retains the water in the pool to a distance of four feet from the water’s edge, there shall be an area or marginal strip with a gradient of not more than 1% measured at right angles from the face of the wall at the water’s edge. From the outer edge of the marginal strip the land shall be graded to a slope not exceeding one foot vertically to each three feet horizontally to meet the original contour of the land.

[Amended by Ord. No. 165]

 198-7Water supply and treatment. 

  1. There shall be no physical connection between a portable public or private water supply system and such private swimming pools or wading pools at a point below the maximum water line of the pool or to a recirculating or heating system. All swimming pools and the water used shall be of the following types:
  2. Filtered and chemically treated.
  3. Fill and draw and chemically treated.
  4. If a filter system is used, it shall be with a pressure sound filter or an approved equal. If the fill and draw type is used, water shall be changed often enough to maintain a satisfactory standard bacterial quality of the water. Swimming pool water must be chemically treated. Pool water should be tested periodically for residual chlorine and pH. The residual chlorine content should range from a minimum of two to a maximum of six parts per million (ppm) at any time the pool is in use. The pH of the pool water should range from neutral (7.0) to slightly alkaline (7.6).


All private swimming pools shall be treated with chlorine or its compounds in sufficient quantity so that there will be present in the water at all times when the pool is in use a residual of excess chlorine of not less than two parts per million of available free chlorine.

198-9Bacteriological standards.

Not more than 20% of the samples of water taken from any private swimming pool, when more than 20 samples and not less than three samples have been examined, shall contain more than 200 bacteria per cubic centimeter or shall show positive test (confirmed) for coliform in any of five ten-cubic-centimeter portions of water at times when the pool is for use. For the purpose of this section, any number of samplings of water on a single day shall be considered as one sample. The Board of Health is authorized to take samples to ensure compliance with these requirements.

198-10Pool drainage.

All private swimming pools and wading pools hereafter constructed within the borough shall be provided with one drainage outlet not in excess of three inches in diameter, extending from the pool to either a brook, storm sewer or lawn sprinkling system on the premises on which the private pool is located. The discharge of water from such private swimming pools into a brook or storm sewer shall only be permitted following approval by the proper state, county and/or municipal official as the case requires. Approval of an application shall only be given if it is feasible to discharge water from the pool into an accessible brook or storm sewer, or to use such water for the purpose of lawn sprinkling on the premises. Approval shall not be given to discharge water at the curb or on the surface of any street.


[Amended by Ord. No. 251]

  1. The pool area shall be completely enclosed with a fence or secure enclosure of durable construction, so constructed as to prevent the passage of a small child. The fence shall be no less than 48 inches in height, and any gate thereof shall be kept securely locked at all times when the pool is not in use. A sign measuring not more than one square foot in area and stating “Private – No Admittance” may, at the discretion of the owner, be placed on the outside of all gates or doors leading into such private swimming pool.
  2. Temporary fencing required during construction. During construction of the swimming pool, there shall be erected a temporary fence of at least 48 inches in height and shall be maintained during construction by the owner of the property.

198-12Bath houses.

A bath house is not required; however, any such construction, including screened enclosure, must conform to accessory building construction as defined and governed by the building code and Chapter 220, Zoning, of the borough.

198-13Plastic pools.

[Amended by Ord. No. 195]

  1. Standards; fences. Plastic pools, the construction elements of which are portable when the pool is not in use, shall be subject to the same health standards and controls set forth in this chapter, with the exception that if any plastic pool shall rise 48 inches or higher vertically from the ground then no fence or gates shall be required to enclose the pool.
  2. Applications shall be filed with the Borough Clerk and a fee of $10 paid for each such installation. Each application must be approved by the Building Inspector and the Board of Health. Approval or rejection shall be made in writing within 10 days from the date of application to the Clerk. The fee shall cover the cost of processing the application and will not be refunded in the event of rejection by the borough.
  3. The storing of the pool and replacing it for use in the same location shall not be considered a new installation; however, if the location of the pool is changed, this shall be considered a new installation and shall be subject to a new application and fee of $10.
  4. The owner or person in charge of a pool shall be required to take up the access ladder when the pool is not in use.


Every private swimming pool or wading pool, as defined herein, constructed or to be constructed in the borough shall at all times comply with the requirements of the Board of Health of the borough. Any nuisance or hazard to health which may be created or caused in connection with any such swimming pool shall be abated and removed by the owner, lessee or occupant of the premises on which the pool is located within 10 days after receipt of written notice from the Building Inspector, Borough Engineer or Board of Health.


For more information on New Jersey pool fencing laws and regulations, or if you are interested in what designs work best around your pool, visit Carl’s at or call 732-504-3372.

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