What is Risk MAP? A national program launched by FEMA to deliver quality data that increases public awareness of flooding and promotes resilient communities.

In 2010, FEMA launched Risk MAP (Mapping, Assessing, Planning), a national program to improve flood-risk data and raise flood-risk awareness. As part of its program launch, FEMA funded approximately 30 demonstration projects—selecting us to participate in three—to test and refine Risk MAP concepts and products.

In the first demonstration project, we partnered with the Indiana Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) to demonstrate Risk MAP’s “Discovery” phase for the Lower White River watershed in Indiana. We collected and analyzed  comprehensive flood-risk data to create a map that highlighted areas of flood concern and then presented the map in community meetings throughout the watershed to documented local feedback. The Discovery map helps communities to determine where to focus more detailed flood studies and analyses.

In the second and third demonstration projects, we partnered with IDNR and Christopher B. Burke Engineering, Ltd. to demonstrate the next phase of Risk MAP, which included developing flood-risk products, such as multi-frequency flood depth grids and Hazus-MH analyses, for two stream reaches in the Upper White River watershed in Indiana.

Since our demonstration projects, we’ve conducted additional Risk MAP projects in the Middle Wabash-Busseron, Lower Wabash, and Silver Little watersheds, and we’re currently assisting FEMA and IDNR with Resiliency meetings to help communities brainstorm potential mitigation projects to reduce the impact of flooding.