Evaluating Structural Glass and Glazing for Flood Mitigation in Florida

Glass Flood Mitigation
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Anyone living in Florida can tell you that flood control is an issue that homeowners, real estate investors, and commercial properties face. Coastal areas and cities, such as Miami, are fighting the rising tide and experiencing the impact of flooding waters.

With increasing development along low-lying coastlines and worsening weather patterns each year, it’s a growing problem that communities all over the world experience. While there are many flood mitigation strategies that city, state, and federal governments utilize, what can the average Florida real estate stakeholder do to help protect their property from floods? 

Structural vs Non-Structural Flood Mitigation

When evaluating a property’s effectiveness at reducing the impact of flooding, here at DOP Engineering we first assess the current flood mitigation strategies in place, such as:

  1. Solid infrastructure, such as dams, bridges, levees, etc. 
  2. Upkeep of existing infrastructure, like stormwater drainage systems and clear creeks.
  3. Individual property flood proofing, such as fencing, raised windows, and sealed doors.

Our structural engineers also assess non-structural flood mitigation strategies to ensure areas are properly evaluated for flooding, such as land use planning, city and state warning systems, and resident emergency plans. This helps homeowners, investors, and insurers understand the impact of flooding on a property and make appropriate decisions regarding flood insurance and protection. Most flood-prone areas also have controls and limits on new home construction or renovations that require certain measures for flood protection, so it’s important for buyers and investors to understand these local ordinances.

Using Structural Glass and Glazing for Flood Mitigation

Structural engineers can implement active and passive products for flood mitigation. The use of structural glass in these products can be an aesthetically pleasing and effective flood mitigation strategy. Active flood mitigation products are deployed prior to a flood and removed once the threat recedes. Passive products are permanent structural components that are installed once and may need minimal maintenance over time, such as glass flood barriers and flood windows.

DOP Engineering has developed glass and glazing structural designs that are capable of flood prevention and mitigation. These glass walls can be effective as a defense against rising bodies of water and floating debris. They can also be used to raise the height of current walls to provide better flood protection. Not only can glass walls be an effective flood mitigation strategy, but they are less visually intrusive and require little to no maintenance. Glazing can be applied to existing walls as an additional active layer of protection, as well. 

So, whether you have an existing property or are in the market to invest in one, if you live along the Florida coast or other areas affected by frequent flooding, you should consider the use of structural glass flood mitigation materials. There are many prevention and mitigation measures you can take.  Please contact our structural engineers here at DOP Engineering to learn more about our structural glass designs.