Understanding the Effects of Map Changes

A Better Picture of Flood Hazards
Over time, water flow and drainage patterns can change dramatically due to surface erosion, land use and other forces. The likelihood of riverine and flash flooding will change as well. The older flood hazard maps in effect for Santa Cruz County do not reflect these changes. Created nearly 30 years ago, they are seriously out of date.

Digital Flood Insurance Rate Maps
New maps using new digital mapping techniques, are now becoming available to provide detailed, reliable and current information on county and local community flood hazards The new flood hazard maps are also known as Digital Flood Insurance Rate Maps (DFIRMS). They present a better picture of the areas likely to be affected by flooding and provide a stronger foundation from which to make building and land use decisions.

Newer Maps Mean Safer Communities
These maps are important tools in the effort to protect lives and property. By showing the extent to which specific areas, neighborhoods and individual properties are at risk for flooding, flood maps help business and property owners make financial decisions about protecting their property. They also enable community planners, local officials, engineers, builders and others to determine where and how new structures and developments should be built.

As the new maps are introduced, it is important that property owners, insurers, lenders, real estate agents and brokers, developers, and builders, understand what the changes are and what the effects will be.

More Information
Learn more about the effects and what you need to know: