Floodplain Information

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a floodplain?

What are the guidelines for floodplains?

Do I need a Floodplain Elevation Certificate?

How do I obtain my floodplain status?

Am I in a floodplain?

How do I obtain a Floodplain Use Permit?

What are the fees?

Contact Us and Hours


What is a floodplain?

A floodplain is the part of the land where water collects, pools, and flows during the course of natural events. Such areas are classified by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) as Special Flood Hazard Areas (SFHA) and are located within identified 100-year flood zones.

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What are the guidelines for floodplains?

City of Tucson Mayor and Council adopted the revised Floodplain Ordinance and Tucson Floodplain Management Plan on August 9, 2016. The updated Floodplain Ordinance (Tucson Code Chapter 26 Article 1) are in effect as of September 8, 2016. The new ordinance changes apply to all new floodplain use permit applications as of September 8, 2016.
 
Adopted Floodplain Documents:
 
The Flood Risk Map, Floodplain Management Plan, and Floodplain Ordinance Update do not directly change any flood insurance maps or change the flood status of any property within the City of Tucson.

Information on the City of Tucson's D-FIRMs

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Do I need a Floodplain Elevation Certificate?

Structures located in Federal Emergency Management Ageny (FEMA) floodplains of “A” type zones are often required to have a Floodplain Elevation Certificate for each structure.

If you are looking for a floodplain elevation certificate: 

  • Enter the property site address into Property Research Online (PRO) to see there is a floodplain elevation certificate on file.
  • If you cannot find a floodplain elevation certificate through PRO and you need to have one completed one can be provided. The floodplain elevation certificate that is provided will only be partially completed. The rest needs to be completed by an Arizona Registered Land Surveyor.

To obtain a floodplain elevation certificate, please complete the form through Tucson Development Center Online

For more information on floodplain elevation certificates and to obtain a blank floodplain elevation certificate, visit the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA's) National Flood Insurance Program Elevation Certificate and Instructions.

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How do I obtain my Floodplain Status?

To obtain written documentation of floodplain status, please use this link.

FEMA Floodplain Maps: Search your address and follow the step-by-step tutorial to determine the FEMA floodplain status of your property and download a full-scale section of a FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM)

FEMA Flood Insurance Information

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Am I in a Floodplain?

You can determine if you are located in a floodplain by using the floodplain and stormwater layer in MapTucson.

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How do I obtain a Floodplain Use Permit?

Applications for a Floodplain Use Permit may be made online through Tucson Development Center Online and are subject to the following regulations:

(a) Except as otherwise provided in these regulations, it shall be unlawful for any person to establish, erect, alter or relocate a use or structure in the regulatory floodplain or an erosion-prone area as described in section 26-11.1(2) without first obtaining a Floodplain Use Permit (FUP) from the city engineer.

(b) It shall be unlawful for any person to perform any grading operation in or alteration of any watercourse in violation of this chapter. Without written authorization from the city engineer, any such act, including excavation of any kind, is a public nuisance per se and may be abated, prevented or restrained by action of the city.

(c) No license, permit or other similar approval for any development which would be in conflict with the provisions of this chapter shall be issued by any department, official or employee of the city; and any such license, permit or approval, if issued in conflict with the provisions of this chapter, shall be considered null and void.

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What are the fees?

 Request, Determination, Application, or Review Price
Floodplain Elevation Certificate Request Form $40.00
Written determination of FEMA status $15.00
Floodplain Status Application Form $15.00
Floodplain Use Permit (FUP)  $50.00 plus a $16.50 record archiving fee
Review of engineering studies, including review of first resubmittal $150.00
Review of subsequent resubmittals $300.00

Payments can be made via our payment portal Tucson Development Center Online.

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Contact Us and Hours

PDSD Engineering can be contacted at (520) 791-5550.

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