Flooding Concerns and Stormwater Management

Following several extreme rain and flood events in 2013 and 2014, the Town Council identified review of Stormwater Management practices as one of its priorities.  During that time, staff, Mayor and Town Council have reviewed existing ordinances, maintenance efforts, the details of federal and private flood insurance programs, and conducted comprehensive analysis of flood flows and mitigation options in the Cheney watershed.  This extensive multi-year review and analysis resulted in a philosophical conversation about what level of stormwater management service was appropriate for the Town to fund and deliver. The Mayor and Town Council adopted Resolution 2017-08 declaring its stormwater management policy.  Some of the town’s policies identified include:

  • Provide stormwater data to residents;
  • Participate in the National Flood Insurance Program;
  • Regulate development to mitigate the impacts of storm drainage;
  • Budget for small flood control projects and seek cost sharing opportunities; and,
  • Consider cost-benefit analysis for all proposed stormwater projects.

Flood Insurance

Homeowner's insurance policies do not include flood protection, instead it has to be purchased separately.  It is important to note, you can purchase flood insurance whether you are in a floodplain or not because the Town of Paradise Valley is a Participating Community in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).  Utilize the links below to find further information regarding flood insurance, town floodplains, or to report a flood.

Flooding Resources

To learn more about the basics of Flood Insurance, please review this PowerPoint Presentation.

Comprehensive information regarding FEMA Flood Insurance can be found at FEMA's Website.

Utilize the Maricopa County Floodplain Viewer to see if your property is within a floodplain.

To report a flood event, please utilize the Report a Flood Tool developed by the Flood Control District of Maricopa County and/or contact the Town's Engineering Department at 480-348-3573 or utilize the Town's Service Request Tracker.

Storm Sewers


Stormwater is naturally occurring precipitation, and while some stormwater soaks into the ground, much of it turns into runoff and can pick up pollutants like chemicals, automotive fluids, sediment, and litter as it flows over various surfaces. Runoff is channeled into the Town of Paradise Valley’s Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4). The MS4 has many parts, including washes, catch basins, storm drains, curbs, inlets, scuppers, streets, gutters, retention basins, and any other Town-owned structure that conveys stormwater to waters of the US.

It is important to understand that the MS4 is separate from the sanitary sewer system. The sanitary sewer transfers waste water from residences and businesses directly to the Water Reclaimation Facility for treatment.

In contrast, the MS4 has no treatment process and empties its unfiltered contents directly into basins, drainages, and bodies of water, where it eventually infiltrates into the groundwater. This is why preventing stormwater pollution is so important. Stormwater remains unfiltered as it makes its way through the MS4, so whatever goes down the storm drain can eventually end up in our water supply.

Typical pollutants found in stormwater include trash, fertilizers, household detergents, pool water, pet waste, sediment, gasoline and petroleum products, and hazardous chemicals.

Storm Drainage Design Manual Update



The town is currently in the process of updating its Storm Drainage Design Manual, originally written in 1987.  A proposed draft of the updated document can be downloaded by clicking on the link below.  The updated document seeks to provide the development community the most comprehensive source for storm drainage design, including requirements for Drainage Reports, SWPPP's, storm water facility design guidelines, retention requirements, first flush requirements, etc. for projects within the Town of Paradise Valley. If you would like to provide comments please call Jeremy Knapp at 480-348-3622 or email at jknapp@paradisevalleyaz.gov.

Storm Drainage Design Manual - DRAFT

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