New interim Floodplain Development Regulations and floodplain maps will take effect on August 23, 2020. The City of Seattle is required by FEMA to update our floodplain maps based on their new maps dated August 19, 2020. As part of this update, Seattle is also required to update SMC 25.06, which is Seattle’s Floodplain Development Regulations. These interim regulations will be effective for approximately six months while SDCI works on permanent regulations.
Properties within areas mapped as special flood hazard areas are required to meet standards intended to protect the occupants’ lives and mitigate damage to property and buildings. The standards vary by the specific flood zone designations, characteristics of the property, and the nature of the development proposed. Generally, the requirements include:
- The elevation that the first floor of a new structure must be built at to keep the first story above anticipated flood levels
- Structures must be engineered to withstand wind from anticipated storms
- Structures must be engineered to withstand flood waters should anticipated flood levels be exceeded
Additionally, if your property is in a FEMA mapped area, flood insurance may be required by your mortgage lender, if you have one. For additional information from FEMA regarding flood insurance please see FEMA’s website.
SDCI will be working on the permanent regulations through February 2021. SDCI conduct public outreach and will have a Floodplain Development Regulations website where we will provide the new maps and the proposed changes to the regulations for the permanent regulations.
If you have questions regarding the interim Floodplain Development Regulations or maps, please contact Joel Lehn at Joel.Lehn@seattle.gov.
If you would like to be added to SDCI’s e-mail distribution list to receive information regarding the permanent regulations, please contact Maggie Glowacki at Margaret.Glowacki@seattle.gov.