FEMA Agrees to Shrink Newport Beach Coastal Flood Zone, Saving Property Owners Millions in Insurance Costs

A boat passes marina in front homes on Dec.4, 2009 on Balboa Island in Newport Beach. (Credit: David McNew/Getty Images)

A boat passes marina in front homes on Dec.4, 2009 on Balboa Island in Newport Beach. (Credit: David McNew/Getty Images)

Newport Beach has persuaded the Federal Emergency Management Agency to exclude about 2,700 properties in the coastal part of the city from updated flood maps.

That means owners in parts of the Balboa Peninsula, Balboa Island and West Newport won’t need pricey flood insurance, saving up to about $3,700 each, or $10 million combined, each year in premiums, the city estimates.

City staff worked on the rollback for two years, showing FEMA that municipal infrastructure such as seawalls and sand berms on the beach protected more of the waterfront and adjacent neighborhoods than the federal agency’s models predicted.

Initially, FEMA added more than 3,000 Newport Beach properties to expanded flood zones when it revised its maps in 2016, more than doubling the number of affected properties.

Read the full story on LATimes.com.