Floodplain Guidelines

Jamila Johnson, P.E., Managing Engineer





Sims Bayou Federal and Regional Project Map
Sims Project Completion and Letter of Map - Press Release

Click Here for Flood Damage Repair in the Floodplain

Floodplain guidelines and frequently asked questions.

Chapter 19 

Chapter 19 Guidelines

Letter of Map Change Process

City of Houston - Elevation Certificate

The Floodplain Management Office (FMO) 1) Issues floodplain permits; 2) Issues Bulkhead permits; 3) Issues Boat dock permits; 4) Reviews CLOMRs, LOMRS, CLOMAs and LOMAS; 5) Recommends Action on Chapter 19 Variance applications to the Board of Appeals; 6) Inspects Structures for conformance with development permit requirements; 7) Inspects mitigation facilities for conformance with permit; 8) Heads CRS Rating application; 9) Reviews CIP plans for compliance with Chapter 19.

Flood Risk Community Open HouseTuesday, May 16, 2017

Join us at Houston Community College’s Central South Campus on Tuesday, May 16 to learn about flood risk in the Sims Bayou Watershed. From 3 to 7 pm, residents can speak to representatives from FEMA and city, county and state flood control offices; learn their flood risk by finding their property on proposed Flood Insurance Rate Maps; and understand more about flood insurance. Download the Open House flyer to learn more.

New Elevation Certificates and FEMA Floodproofing Certificates Now Required – Effective January 1, 2017 

Effective January 1, 2017, the Floodplain Management Office will no longer accept expired Elevation Certificates nor expired National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) Floodproofing Certificates. For each certificate, the expiration date can be found in the top right corner of the document. For the newest version of the Elevation Certificate, click here. The Floodproofing Certificate (for non-residential buildings only) can be found on the Federal Emergency Management Agency website here.

The Elevation Certificate, a tool of the NFIP, is used to provide elevation information for ensuring compliance with floodplain management ordinances, for determining the proper insurance premium rate, and for supporting a request for a Letter of Map change. The NFIP Floodproofing Certificate is used to certify a floodproofing design for non-residential buildings that are permitted as an alternative to elevating to or above the Base Flood Elevation (BFE).

For questions regarding this requirement, please contact the Floodplain Management Office at 832-394-8854 or fmo@houstontx.gov.

Change to the Plan Review Process of Residential Additions in the Floodplain – Effective May 4, 2016

Beginning May 4, 2016, the Floodplain Management Office will discontinue walk-in review of single family residential additions to living space and footprint in the 100-year floodplain. After May 4, plans for these additions must be submitted through the traditional plan review process.

This transition will not affect plans for additions to under-roof space and footprint, such as attached carports and covered porches, nor will it affect plans for second-story additions (additions to the living space without addition to footprint)—the Floodplain Management Office will continue to provide walk-in service through One-Stop Plan Review for these types of residential additions.

For questions about this change in service delivery, please contact the Floodplain Management Office at 832-394-8854 or fmo@houstontx.gov.

White Oak Bayou Pending Effective FIRM (New Maps)

2016 Floodplain Management Plan

The 2016 FMP has been created by the City’s FMP Committee to document and coordinate the City’s floodplain management activities for the purpose of:

  • Reducing flood losses and impacts from flooding
  • Improving protection of the floodplain’s natural and beneficial functions
  • Supporting flood mitigation activities
  • Promoting awareness and attention to the City’s flooding problems
  • Fulfilling the requirements of the Community Rating System to maintain National Flood Insurance Program premium discounts for Houston’s flood insurance policy holders with standard rate policies in the 100 year and 500 year floodplains.

To learn more, follow the below link to view or download the plan. Your comments are encouraged! Email the City’s Floodplain Management Office to offer comments about the FMP.

For insurance agents within the City of Houston, you may request a copy of an Elevation Certificate by calling our Floodplain Management office at 832-394-8854. Only elevation certificates submitted as part of the permitting process are kept on file at the Houston Permitting Center at 1002 Washington Ave. Houston, TX 77002. 

Floodplain Management Plan

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For information on Flood Awareness see pages 22-23 in the Community Connections section of the January 2015 Houston 'YP' The Real Yellow Pages directory.

Flood Hazard

Floodplain Preservation

Flood Safety

My Home Flooded

Flood Protection

Flood Resources

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