Flooding - Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
will the newly elevated roads transition to my driveway and property?
City is committed to meeting with each of the property owners on a case-by-case
basis in regards to planned construction to elevate roads in their
neighborhood. The project team will determine how much your driveway will need
to be gently sloped from the right of way line at the rate of 1 foot vertical
per each 7 feet horizontal. Special exceptions are being made in certain
conditions that exist such as sidewalks and landscaping. If the latter exist, then modifications will
be made. Will
elevating the roads flood my property?
street improvement projects are designed to capture and manage all water within
the public right of way. If the present
drainage from private property flows to the street, when the street is raised,
this water will have to change the direction of flow
to other locations on the private property.
Water will not flow from the elevated City street into private property.
elevating the roads impact flood insurance?
roadways is one of many positive steps a community can take to mitigate risks
and increase their resilience to natural hazards. Once
completed, the elevations associated with the roadways can be taken into
account in modeling applied to FEMA’s Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRM),
potentially changing modeling results that support the hazards depicted on the
FEMA is updating these maps in Miami-Dade County, including the City of Miami
Beach. Completed work will be incorporated, as possible, into the ongoing
modeling. Future changes, or changes unable to be incorporated due to timing
issues, can be incorporated through the FEMA Letter of Map Change process. Any
change in Base Flood Elevation, regardless of its origin, will impact the flood
insurance rating, which is done on an individual structure basis taking into
consideration a number of flood risk factors.
We expect draft maps for comment by 2018 and final maps by 2021. The
City will make sure that FEMA has the best and latest available data before the
maps are finalized. Existing maps are located here:
is the City doing to reduce your personal flood insurance premiums?
City participates in the National Flood Insurance Program Community Rating
System, and is in the top performance tier of all Miami-Dade County
cities. Our score currently saves
residents 20% on their flood insurance premiums - an estimated $6 million
annually. This equates to $136 in
savings for the average $527 premium. We
strongly encourage you to obtain flood insurance, as 93% of existing buildings
on Miami Beach are in the Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA) as defined by
FEMA. The most
effective way to reduce the cost of flood insurance is for the first finished
floor of a property to be above the FEMA Base Flood Elevation (BFE). For more information about flood insurance
rates, we advise you to contact your flood insurance agent.
can I do to help prevent flooding on my property?
roads does NOT mean you are at increased flood risk. On the contrary, your flood risk is reduced
because of the new advanced drainage system designed to remove storm water from
the public right of way. However, as a
property owner in a floodplain community like Miami Beach, there are available options
to reduce the risk of flood damage to your property. Similar to reducing the risk of hurricane
damage through home improvements, such as hurricane impact windows and
shutters, there are several
retrofitting options that can be explored:
Wet flood proofing makes uninhabited parts of your building
resistant to flood damage when water is allowed to enter during flooding. This retrofitting method is only
appropriate for uninhabitable areas such as garages and limited storage areas.
Using flood resistant
as concrete or tile as opposed to wood, can reduce damage and make cleanup
quick in the case of water entering your home or garage.
Dry-flood proofing is sealing your building to prevent flood
waters from entering. This retrofitting method is good alternative when a
non-residential building cannot be elevated. In order to obtain the same flood
insurance rating as a building that would be elevated to Design Flood
Elevation, the building must be dry-flood proofed to 1 foot above BFE (Base
Flood Elevation). Flood wall protection means constructing barriers to prevent flood
waters from entering your property. Increasing the height of your
lowest livable space can reduce flood risk. Elevation means adjusting the lowest floor of a building, equipment
and appliances above the Base Flood Elevation (BFE). This can mean adapting your floor elevations
wherever possible. In addition, you can raise mechanical, electrical, and
plumbing without elevating an entire building to reduce the risk of flood damage. This is the most effective way to protect buildings
against flood events. Landscaping design and grading can help
retain water onsite. Increasing the amount of pervious area on your property by
removing unnecessary pavement can increase the amount of water that can be
captured naturally. Also, selecting native, salt tolerant vegetation is
recommended. See this Florida Friendly Plants Guide:
can I tie my storm water infrastructure into the City’s drainage efforts?
this is not an option for private property owners but we are exploring options
to provide our residents with additional water management options in the
can I pay for flood risk reduction retrofits?
public infrastructure upgrades are a commitment to investing in the City of
Miami Beach to reduce flood risk. This
is a significant advantage to you, as homeowner, in protecting your property
values and reducing risk. The City does
not pay for renovations or retrofits on private property. Similar to hurricane retrofitting, it is your
responsibility as a property owner to invest as you see fit. Like most coastal cities, Miami Beach’s older
housing stock built with a lower finished flood elevation will be in transition
for years to come.
urgent is it for me to retrofit my property to reduce flood risk?
is not an easy, short answer for this.
Similar to any other home renovations or retrofits, that is a personal
decision. However, knowing your home’s
elevation, and past history of any flooding issues will help you make that
determination. We want you to make an
informed decision about your property. To
obtain your unique elevation information, you can obtain an elevation
certificate; more details on this are located in question 10. What
about sea level rise?
level rise is not immediate. We know
there are global and local projections that the sea level is rising, however,
the City is preparing for this through elevating roads and implementing storm
water pumps, and requiring higher elevation for new or significant
construction. Any personal property
improvements to reduce flood risk will also reduce risk in the future as sea
levels rise over time. More information
on the Unified Sea Level Rise Projection can be found at: