FEMA increased League City's rating from Class 6 to Class 5 in the National Flood Insurance Program’s Community Rating System, which is a result of League City’s continual flood plain management efforts to reduce flooding losses, according to the release. The subsequent savings on flood insurance are a tangible result of the flood mitigation activities implemented by League City to protect lives and reduce property damage, said William Lesser, FEMA's community rating system coordinator, in the release.
League City is the fourth city in Texas to achieve the Class 5 designation, joining Houston, Dallas and Grand Prairie. No Texas cities or counties are rated higher than a Class 5, per the release.
“I commend the determination and efforts of the city’s engineering, floodplain and stormwater management departments to make this rating increase possible,” City Manager John Baumgartner said in the release. “Their commitment to make our community more disaster resistant enhances public safety, property protection, and protects the natural functions of our area’s floodplains.”
The League City area most recently experienced flooding during Tropical Storm Beta. In Clear Lake, Exploration Green—a 178-acre former golf course turned stormwater detention pond between El Camino Real, Bay Area Boulevard and Space Center Boulevard—will protect 2,000 to 3,000 surrounding homes from flooding in 12 to 15 inches of rain once completed. The second phase of Exploration Green was completed in late September.
During Hurricane Harvey, although only 80% of the Phase 1 pond was excavated at the time of the storm, it helped detain 100 million gallons of water, protecting at least 150 homes from flooding. Tropical Storm Imelda had a minimal impact on the community the following year, and Exploration Green had no trouble withstanding Tropical Storm Beta.