Floodplain Management

Rockville Participates in the National Flood Insurance Program

A Flood Insurance Rate Map or FIRM is a flood map created by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and used by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) for floodplain management, mitigation, and insurance purposes.  This is also the official map of the community which delineates both the Special Flood Hazard Areas (SFHAs) and the risk premium zones applicable to the community. 

It is Rockville’s participation in the National Flood Insurance Program and adoption of these FIRMs that permit our citizens to obtain federally backed flood insurance. This flood insurance may be purchased by anyone within Rockville regardless of their property or structure being within a floodplain.

Still have questions? Contact: 

Environmental Management
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240-314-8873
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111 Maryland Ave.
Rockville, MD 20850
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Monday - Friday
8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.

What should I do if my property is location on a floodplain?

Knowing your flood risk is the first step to flood protection. The risk for flooding can vary within the same neighborhood and even property to property, but all properties are at risk of flooding and should consider taking the actions below. 

Purchase Flood Insurance

If you have a mortgage from a federally regulated lender and the building(s) on this parcel are within the SFHA, then by federal law, your lender must require you to carry flood insurance.

If you live in a high-risk flood area and have received federal disaster assistance – including grants from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) or low-interest disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) – you must maintain flood insurance in order to be considered for any future federal disaster aid.

Most homeowners and renters' insurance policies do not cover flooding. It typically takes up to 30 days for a policy to take effect. The time to buy is before a disaster. and should take steps to reduce your flooding risk.

Learn about the types of flood insurance and how to purchase.

Built Improvements in the Floodplain

If you are planning a construction project on your property and it is in the floodplain, you may need a Simplified Floodplain Permit or a Floodplain Variance and Floodplain Permit. View the permit applications and documents here.

A Simplified Floodplain Permit is required for the following types of work in the floodplain:
  • Public utilities
  • Public facilities owned or operated by the City
  • Minor landscaping installation and maintenance
  • Split-rail fences or other non-obstructive fences
  • Play or seating equipment
  • Patios, decks, paths and paving less than 1,000 square feet (must not raise the surrounding grade by more than 1 foot)
  • Recreational Vehicles stored in the floodplain
Floodplain Variance and Floodplain Permit is required for the following types of work in the floodplain: 
Note: Structures includes principal structures and accessory structures, such as garages or sheds
  • Dredging, excavating, filling or grading the land
  • Construction of new Structures
  • Substantial Improvement of Structures, including repair of Substantial Damage to Structures
  • Construction, repair or substantial improvement of gas or liquid storage tanks that are principally above ground
  • Placement or replacement of Manufactured Structures, including Substantial Improvement or repair of Substantial Damage to Manufactured Structures
  • Erecting or installing a Temporary Structure
  • Alteration of a Watercourse, including stream relocation, stream stabilization, or stream restoration
  • Subdividing or re-subdividing lots that contain Special Flood Hazard Areas

Reduce Your Risk of Flood Damage

There are many actions that can be taken to reduce your flooding risk that will depend on your property. View the City’s Flooding Relief webpage for additional resources on flooding relief, preparing for a flood, and flood protection measures for both inside and outside your home.