New Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
Flood Insurance Rate Maps May Affect You
The public is invited to attend one of two public meetings scheduled below. Click on the links below to find out more:
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has recently revised the Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) within Alameda County which may affect the floodplain designation of your property in Alameda. The new maps become effective on December 21, 2018 and have added approximately 2,000 City of Alameda parcels within the Special Flood Hazard Area, commonly known as the 100-year floodplain.
Alameda property owners may recall receiving notice in 2015 regarding FEMA’s proposed flood hazard determination for Alameda. In response, the City conducted public outreach by sending letters to homeowners whose parcels were mapped within the new 100-year floodplain, holding public information meetings, and publishing information on the city website. The City, along with several other surrounding jurisdictions, appealed the proposed maps. On June 21, 2018, FEMA stated that they evaluated the appeals, the appeals were resolved, and that their determination is considered final. The revised FIRMs are effective as of December 21, 2018 and will remain substantially unchanged from the 2015 proposed maps. The revised FIRMs are available on FEMA's map portal website, https://msc.fema.gov/portal . The maps can be found by going to https://msc.fema.gov/portal and typing, "Alameda" in the search bar. On the next screen, click on the "Show All Products" box on the right hand side of the screen. On the next screen, click on "Pending Products (16)" and then "FIRM Panels (12)" below it to see a full list of the proposed flood maps.
The City must adopt the newly revised FIRMs in order to continue participation in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). The NFIP allows the City and property owners to be eligible for federally managed flood insurance, federally backed mortgages, federal grants, and federal disaster relief, while providing a means for property owners to financially protect themselves (a risk not covered by standard homeowner’s insurance policies). For more information on the NFIP and the insurance requirements please visit www.floodsmart.gov or call 1(888) 379-9531.
Initial View of New Flood Maps
A view of the new flood maps can be found on the City's CommunityView website at https://alamedaca.gov/permits/communityview. CommunityView provides property information including zoning, General Plan designation, flood zone data, and general property data provided by the county Assessor's office in GIS format. To view the maps, click on the Legend icon, then scroll down and under the "Environmental" heading click on "FEMA100yr62018" (areas shown in blue are in the 100 year floodplain).
Properties within 100-Year Floodplain
If your property is located in the 100-year floodplain, you are required to purchase flood insurance if your lender is federally regulated or insured. If flood insurance is not required but the property is in the 100-year floodplain, flood insurance should still be considered for the building and contents within it.
When a property is located within the 100-year floodplain, the owner may choose to have their house surveyed to determine if the lowest adjacent grade is above the predicted flood level (known as the Base Flood Elevation or BFE). This process requires an Elevation Certificate completed by a licensed surveyor or registered civil engineer (who is authorized to perform surveying). If the Elevation Certificate verifies that the grade is above the BFE, this can then be used to apply for a FEMA Letter of Map Amendment (LOMA). Lenders have the option of waiving the flood insurance requirement if a LOMA has been approved by FEMA.
Residential Construction in Special Flood Hazard Areas
After the new maps are effective, all new and substantially improved structures (cost of which equals or exceeds 50% of the market value of the structure, tracked over a 3-year period) within the identified 100-year floodplain will be required to elevate the structure above the BFE, obtain an Elevation Certificate, and file it with the City.
The City of Alameda has created a PDF document to provide answers to frequently asked questions and serve as a guide to residential construction within Special Flood Hazard Areas. Download the pdf version of this document below:
FAQ and Construction Guide
Helpful FEMA Documents
NEW What Property Owners Need to Know About Map Changes 2018
Viewing the New Alameda FIRMs
The new maps can be found by going to https://msc.fema.gov/portal and typing, "Alameda" in the search bar. On the next screen, click on the "Show all Products" box on the right hand side of the screen. On the next screen click on "Pending Products (16)" and then "FIRM Panels (12)" below it to see a full list of the proposed flood maps. The following map numbers correspond to the areas shown in parentheses:
06001C0062H (Alameda Point NW)
06001C0064H (Alameda Point SW)
06001C0066H (Alameda Point NE and Bayport)
06001C0067H (Marina Village)
06001C0068H (Alameda Point SE and Ballena Bay)
06001C0069H (West Alameda Island)
06001C0088H (East Alameda Island)
06001C0232H (West Bay Farm Island)
06001C0251H (East Bay Farm Island)
Paper Copies of the New Maps:
Paper copies of the new mpas are available at the Permit Center at City Hall (2263 Santa Clara Ave., ground floor), City Hall West (950 West Mall Square, Room 110), or the Main Library (1550 Oak St), Bay Farm Island Library (3221 Mecartney Rd.), and the Cumminity of Harbor Bay Isle Owner's Association office at 3195 Mecartney Rd.
For More Information:
Please contact City of Alameda Public Works Department, by phone: (510) 747-7930 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org between the hours of 8am to 6pm, Monday through Thursday.