Floodplain Information

Flood Protection Information

The City of Odessa is dedicated to minimizing the loss of life and property due to flooding. Generally, flooding is caused by storms characterized by heavy rainfall from frontal-type storms. Major flooding can be produced by these localized thunderstorms, which may occur at any time during the year but are more prevalent in the spring and summer months. Significant flooding occurred in:

  • 1936
  • 1959
  • 1978
  • 1979
  • 1986

In September 2004 flash flooding in the City of Odessa caused the closure of many of the City's roads. And a significant flood even occurred in May 2007 that damaged homes and closed roads throughout the county.

Drainage System

The primary drainage system for the City of Odessa includes the:

  • Eastside Channel
  • Far East Channel
  • Far East Side Channel
  • Monahans Draw
  • Muskingum Draw
  • Westside Channel

Additionally, multiple low lying areas known as playa lakes or buffalo wallows exist within the community. Properties located in or near these areas are at a higher probability of flooding. However, any property is at risk of flooding by greater than predicted storms or local drainage problems.

Natural & Beneficial Functions

Local and regional floodplains play a valuable role in providing natural and beneficial functions that benefit both human and natural systems. These include aesthetic as well as active processes such as filtering nutrients. Floodplains include areas for waterfowl, fish and other wildlife habitats in addition to feeding and breeding grounds.

When flooding spreads out across the floodplain, its energy is dissipated, which results in lower flows downstream, reduced erosion of the stream bank and channel, and deposition of sediments higher in the watershed. Poorly planned development in the floodplain can lead to stream bank erosion, loss of valuable property, increased risk of flooding to downstream properties and degradation of water quality.

Map Information Service

The City of Odessa Engineering Department provides many services including flood zone determinations and flood zone determination letters, copies of Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) and answers questions related to local floodplain management requirements.