FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) Flood Maps
The FEMA (flood) map for our neighborhood is available in two parts:
FEMA maps are a good starting point to determine the risk of flooding, but they are not 100% accurate for our area. This is because the FEMA models don’t capture adequately wet-weather creeks that are plentiful in the Hill Country. They are also limited in that they assume tree coverage that is unrealistic of a populated subdivision — as tree coverage is reduced in areas with little or no topsoil (e.g. removing cedar, without planting replacement trees; or building structures in previously treed areas), more water rushes into our creeks, increasing the width of flooding creeks.
Finally, for the more paranoid readers, those maps are based on historical data, and don’t take into account unprecedented weather patterns that may result from global warming (if you believe in it). So, in short, use your own observation skills to assess your level of flood risk for your present structures and future projects.
Aerial photos for our neighborhood (from 1996), with overlaid elevation contours at 10ft intervals, are available in two forms:
An additional photo, from around 2002, contains more recent features.
You can obtain more information about our area from the following sources:
- Google Maps: aerial/satellite photos.
- Google Earth: aerial/satellite photos and 3D maps; the free service is limited in resolution.
- TerraServer: aerial/satellite photos; the free service is limited in resolution.
- United States Department of Agriculture Geospatial Data Gateway: all sorts of information, including climate data, soil types, and more; but you have to download a viewer to analyze the data.
- Texas Natural Resources Information System: like the previous site, but specific to Texas.