Shawnee County Floodplain Management

Protection Resolutions Prevention.

Property Protection Measures

Home and business owners can protect themselves from future floods or reduce the effect of future floods by various means including:

  • Elevating the structure
  • Floodproofing the structure
  • Facilitating future evacuations
  • Buying flood insurance

For more information on protecting your property from flood damage, please visit the FEMA website.

Additional information on flood protection measures and building protection is also available at the Shawnee County Planning Department and through floodplain catalogued at the Topeka-Shawnee County Library.

Localized Drainage Concerns (Residential Properties)

The Shawnee County Floodplain Management Regulations indicate that adequate drainage be provided (e.g. not diverting or impounding the natural flow of surface waters) so as to reduce exposure to flood hazards. Essentially, this means that the natural path of storm water runoff should not to be blocked.

  • If you have experienced minor flooding in your home or ponding water in your yard, you may simply have a localized drainage problem that can be corrected with minor grading.
  • Property owners are responsible for runoff from private property or between private properties.
  • Become familiar with your lot's intended drainage pattern. In most cases, the runoff is intended to flow to the street around each side of the home. In some cases, portions of your lot may naturally drain onto a neighbor's lot, or perhaps you have neighbors whose yard drains onto yours.
  • Before you decide to make landscaping improvements to your yard, make sure that you are not blocking the path of storm water runoff and inadvertently causing damage to your property, or the surrounding properties.
  • The Shawnee County Planning Department has staff available to offer suggestions which might alleviate minor drainage problems. Call (785) 251-5410 to speak with a representative.
  • Consider purchasing flood insurance, even if your property is not within a FEMA designated Special Flood Hazard Area. Most homeowner's insurance does not cover damages caused by flooding. Shawnee County recommends that all residents purchase flood insurance, even if it is not mandated by your home mortgage company. Every year, 25% of flood damages occur on properties outside of the floodplain.