Proposed Code Change for Additions and Substantial Improvements in FEMA-Designated Floodplains

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has determined that the current provision of our Floodplain Management Ordinance does not meet the minimum requirements of the National Flood Insurance Program. Therefore, the City needs to bring Chapter 10 of City Code into compliance.

The proposed change covers how additions are included in the calculation of Substantial Improvement. Under the new provision, the applicant will have two choices:

  1. Design and certify the addition as “structurally independent” and elevate the addition. The cost of the addition will not be included in the calculation of substantial improvement.
  2. Include the addition in the calculation of substantial improvement. The addition will be elevated.
    • If the value of improvements, including the cost of the addition, is more than 50% of the value of the structure, then the existing structure will be considered substantially improved and will need to be elevated.

This regulation only applies to the FEMA-designated floodplains including the Cache la Poudre River, Spring Creek, Dry Creek, Boxelder Creek and Cooper Slough.

The proposed regulation change does not apply to City-designated floodplains, such as Old Town.

This proposed code change is expected to go before Boards and Commissions in early 2022 and City Council in March or April of 2022.

Learn more about the proposed code change at: https://www.fcgov.com/utilities/floodplain-code-changes. For questions, please contact Marsha Hilmes-Robinson, City of Fort Collins Floodplain Administrator, mhilmesrobinson@fcgov.com, (970) 224-6036.

Remember: All Development in the floodplain requires a Floodplain Use Permit. Check the floodplain map at: fcgov.com/floodplain-maps or call 970-416-2632.

Back to All Articles