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Appeals Process Open For Proposed FEMA Flood Maps In Alexandria

Patch logo Patch 7/23/2021 Emily Leayman
water next to the sidewalk: FEMA opened the 90-day appeals process for proposed updated flood maps in the City of Alexandria. © Emily Leayman/Patch FEMA opened the 90-day appeals process for proposed updated flood maps in the City of Alexandria.

ALEXANDRIA, VA — FEMA has released proposed updates to its City of Alexandria flood maps, which determine flood risks, set flood insurance requirements and affect insurance cost.

In Alexandria, approximately 20 percent of the city is mapped as floodplain. A number of factors contribute to flooding.

"The most common local flooding problem is due to summer thunderstorms with high intensity-short duration rainfall," the city's website states. "The tidal influence on the Potomac River in conjunction with development in low lying areas and an overtaxed stormwater system are also contributing factors to flooding."

Alexandria is participating in FEMA's Flood Insurance Study to update the flood maps. The flood maps were last updated in 2011.

FEMA has provided an interactive map showing proposed changes since the last Flood Insurance Rate Map. A full interactive preliminary map is also available.

A 90-day appeal period for property owners impacted by the flood map changes began on July 22. Residents may submit an appeal if they believe the modeling or data used to create the map is technically or scientifically incorrect.

The proposed flood maps have already undergone community review. The city held meetings focused on different watersheds: Four Mile Run; Potomac River/Old Town; Hooff’s Run; Cameron Run, Backlick Run, Strawberry Run, Taylor Run; and Holmes Run. Before maps become final, residents can identify corrections or questions and submit appeals or comments.

Appeals and comments can be directed to the local floodplain administrator, by mail to Brian Rahal, P.E., CFM, Transportation & Environmental Services, 2900B Business Center Drive, Alexandria, VA 22314, by phone at 703-746-4057, or by email at stormwater@alexandriava.gov.

Appeals must be received by the City of Alexandria by 5 p.m. on Oct. 20 for submission to FEMA. More information about the appeal process is available online.

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