Stormwater Flooding Resources

Decorative illustration. Image is horizontal with phased out grey city buildings, with sea green and teal underneath the buildings.
Stormwater Flooding Resources

Water, Water, Everywhere. . .

The Increasing Threat of Stormwater Flooding in Greater Boston | Tools & Resources

A photo of Furnace Ave in Quincy, Massachusetts after the 2010 flooding. There's homes in the background in the flood water, a construction cone, and two yellow road barriers.
Furnace Ave in Quincy, MA | Credit:


Eric Hove
Director of Strategic Initiatives

In March 2010, the Greater Boston area received 1.5 feet of rain from three historic storms in just 19 days. Thousands of homes and residents were affected. Roads and part of the MBTA shut down. Sewage entered the water system. The Federal Administration issued a disaster declaration for seven counties in the Central and Eastern part of the Commonwealth.

How did this happen, and how can local, state, and federal leaders better understand, prepare for, and minimize flooding and flood damage?

The Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC) entered into an unprecedented data sharing agreement with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) to review disaster claims records from the March 2010 storms. In conjunction with the hazard mitigation planning efforts MAPC does, the data provided a first-of-its kind analysis of stormwater flooding in the Greater Boston area.

The Report

With access to the data, MAPC analyzed 27,000 flood claims from the historic March 2010 storms that dropped 18 inches of rain across Eastern Massachusetts. The in-depth analysis was turned into a report of findings, takeaways, and recommendations: Water, Water Everywhere: The Increasing Threat of Stormwater Flooding in Greater Boston.

One Takeaway: FEMA Flood Maps are poorly predictive of where stormwater flooding is most likely to occur. Ninety-six (96) percent of the disaster claims arose in areas outside of the FEMA Special Flood Hazard Areas (SFHAs), also known as the 1% chance flood zones. As the vast majority of claims were outside the SFHA, most residents were unaware of their risk.

Access the report for more takeaways and detailed information on the research and recommendations.

Design Credit: Ellyn Morgan, MAPC

Press Release

Report Shows Greater Boston is Susceptible to Unpredictable Stormwater Flooding | May 1, 2023 | Read the press release


On Wednesday, May 3, 2023, MAPC hosted a webinar focused on the analysis, findings, and recommendations in the report.

Thank you to our panel of speakers:

  • Marc DraisenExecutive Director, MAPC - Welcome
  • Van DuSenior Environmental Planner, MAPC - Moderator
  • Anne HerbstPrincipal Environmental Planner – retired, MAPC
  • Mia MansfieldDirector of Climate Adaptation and Resilience, MA Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs
  • Jason Mammone, P.E.Director of Engineering, Town of Dedham
  • Rachel BowersRegional Planning Data Analyst, MAPC

Tools & Resources

The following are tools and resources we encourage you to take advantage of to aid your municipality in your climate resiliency and flooding prevention projects. Are there tools and resources that are currently not included below, but should be? Let us know! Contact Rachel Bowers (



Purely a design element. Horizontal overlapping colors of grey and aqua.