Floodplain Information

The City's Resources

Public Works Building
We are here to help with a number of programs to assist with the planning and remediation of areas designated as floodplains in the City. Please see our resources below or contact us at 847.391.5390 with questions or concerns.


For the purpose of identifying flood zones to determine flood insurance rates, the Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRM) prepared by FEMA for Cook County, effective August 19, 2008, are currently used.

For the purpose of regulating property development, these FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Maps are used to determine whether or not a property is subject to special building requirements. Ordinances containing these requirements are found in Title 14 of the City Code, entitled "Regulations for Development in Special Flood Hazard Areas." 

If you would like a written response for a floodplain determination for your property, please complete a Floodplain Request Form. Responses can be expected within 24 to 48 hours.

Flood Rebate Program

Financial assistance is available for qualifying homeowners who have had verifiable flood mitigation/prevention projects performed on their residence. Please see the Flood Rebate Program page for more details.

Floodplain Construction

All new construction (homes, building additions, garages, fences, etc.) in a floodway or floodplain requires a development permit from the Community and Economic Development department. Special conditions and requirements exist for construction in these areas. The City's Floodplain Construction page provides more insight.

Levee 50 Flood Control Project

The Rand Park Flood Control and Multi-Use Project, also known as Levee 50, is designed to alleviate damages caused by the flooding of the Des Plaines River. This project was the first of six flood control projects included in the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers' Des Plaines River Project. As a state sponsor for the Corps' federal project, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources / Office of Water Resources (IDNR/OWR) agreed to design and construct the Rand Park Project as part of the Department's financial obligation to the federal project. The cities of Des Plaines and Park Ridge serve as local sponsors for the project and as such, will ultimately own, operate and maintain the flood control and multi-use trail system constructed. 

The documents below illustrate the location of the project, and highlight all three phases. Phase I included extension of an existing culvert and the installation of a 48-inch Tide Flex gate at the end of that culvert extension. Phase II included construction of a gated closure structure in addition to a pump station at Prairie-Farmer's Creek. This phase was substantially completed in 2005. Phase III was substantially completed in 2009 and included floodwalls, levees, multi-use trail, a Miner Street underpass, and a Golf Road Interceptor Sewer gate at Big Bend Lake. 

The multi-use trail and Miner Street underpass components of the project were part of a federally funded Grand Illinois Trail project. During non-flood times, the 12-food wide trail closes a crucial gap in the roughly 50-mile Des Plaines River Trail and the greater Grand Illinois Trail. The underpass consists of a 12-foot wide by 10-foot high box culvert running underneath Miner Street to serve as trail tunnel and to provide additional flow conveyance during times of high water. 

Flood Insurance in Des Plaines

The City has participated in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) for nearly 30 years. Any property owner (homeowner, business owner, and renter) in Des Plaines can purchase flood insurance from any licensed insurance agent, or directly through NFIP by calling 800.427.4661 or by visiting the NFIP Website. Eligibility is not determined by whether your structure is located in or out of an identified floodplain.

Hazard Mitigation Plan

As part of the City’s participation in the Community Rating System (CRS) program administered by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), the City of Des Plaines adopted by Council Resolution R-201-13, a Hazard Mitigation Plan on December 16, 2013. In so doing, the City of Des Plaines receives direct benefits under Activity 510 Floodplain Management Plan. 

Des Plaines is subject to natural hazards that threaten life and health and cause extensive property damage. To better understand these hazards and their impacts on people and property, and to identify ways to reduce those impacts, the City of Des Plaines undertook this Hazard Mitigation Plan. 

This Plan was developed under the guidance of a Mitigation Planning Committee, authorized by a resolution of the City Council. The Planning Committee’s members included representatives of key City departments, neighborhood associations, academia, and organizations involved in mitigation activities. The Mitigation Planning Committee followed a standard 10-step process, based on FEMA’s guidance and requirements.

This Plan fulfills the Federal mitigation planning requirements, qualifies for Community Rating System credit and provides the City with a blueprint for reducing the impacts of these natural hazards on people and property.

Repetitive Loss Plan

The City of Des Plaines has drafted a Repetitive Loss Plan to identify the most cost-effective ways to reduce its recurring flooding issues. A hard copy of the current plan can be viewed at City Hall (1420 Miner Street) and the Des Plaines Public Library (1501 Ellinwood Street).

Additional Resources