Flood Insurance Rate Maps Update Process

FEMA has updated the Flood Insurance Rate Maps for Arlington County.  The new maps became effective on November 16, 2023.

The County Board adopted the new Floodplain ordinance on October 14, 2023.  View the Updated Floodplain Ordinance.

The new maps reflect current flood risk based on the latest data and a more accurate understanding of our area’s topography.  As a result, property owners throughout Arlington have up-to-date, internet-accessible information about flood risk to your property.

View the Floodplain Maps

FEMA updated Arlington County's Floodplain maps in 2023.  

  • On the FEMA web site: Enter Arlington County in the dropdown box.  You can view and click on the map.  Click on "Show all products" to download the map panels or view historic maps.
  • On the County’s mapping web site: View the floodplain maps on the County’s mapping site.
    • Click on the small grey arrow next to “I want to…” on the left side of the map to change the visible layers on the map.
    • Choose “environmental layers”.
    • Scroll down to “Flood zones” and click on the + sign to expand that section.  Select effective flood zones.
  • View the updated maps at the links below.  

What Is a Flood Insurance Rate Map?

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) publishes flood hazard maps, called Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRM), for all areas of the United States, including Arlington. The purpose of a FIRM is to show the areas in a community that are subject to flooding and the risk associated with these flood hazards.   Knowing your flood risk is the first step to flood protection. 

When do the new maps become effective?

The new maps will become effective on November 16, 2023.  The process of updating the County's maps began with their preliminary release on September 18 2020.  Property owners with floodplain on their property were notified by the County of the new preliminary maps, and the County hosted a public meeting in November 2020 to discuss the map update process and answer questions.  There was a public appeal period from July - October 2021.  FEMA accepted one appeal submitted by the County and FEMA revised some of the preliminary maps, which were released in April 2022.  There was an additional 90 day appeal period in the summer of 2022. 

The County Board adopted the new Floodplain ordinance on October 14, 2023.  The new ordinance will go into effect on November 16, 2023.

View the Updated Floodplain Ordinance.