Baltimore Coastal Storm Risk Management Study Stakeholders,
We wanted to touch base with you on the progress of our study to evaluate coastal storm risk and vulnerability within the Baltimore Coastal study area, focusing on regionally critical infrastructure, including port terminals, highways (and evacuation routes), hospitals, public utilities and local airport authority facilities that are susceptible to coastal flooding.
We have an approved Project Management Plan, which guides the study milestones and funding allocations between the Army Corps and the project sponsor, Maryland Department of Transportation.
We are wrapping up the "scoping phase" of our study, which consisted of gathering information, identification of problems and opportunities, preliminary formulation of flood risk management alternatives, and the public meeting/open house, which was held on Sept. 23, 2019, in Baltimore.
We have completed coastal flood inundation mapping within the study area to identify flooding issues and hotspots for "without project" conditions, which means the current and future state of flooding if no projects were to be constructed. Inundation mapping was performed under different storm scenarios (100 and 500-year floods) and sea level rise projections (Corps of Engineers' "Low", "Intermediate" and "High" projections) for years 2030 to 2080. We have also performed an initial run of our economic model to assess preliminary monetary flood damages in the study area "without project" conditions.
We are currently working on refining the various flood risk management alternatives developed to date based primarily on a rough cost to construct / benefit of construction (flood damages reduced, etc.) analysis.
In compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act, we have sent agency coordination letters to support development of an Environmental Impact Statement that will evaluate potential environmental and cultural resource impacts related to implementation of coastal storm risk management projects.
We plan to publish a draft Feasibility Report/Environmental Impact Statement for public review around October 2020 that will include our modeling findings, as well as recommendation(s) for a potential coastal storm risk management project.
- Study Team, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Baltimore District; Maryland Department of Transportation