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Scientific Investigations Map 3275

Prepared in cooperation with the Will County Stormwater Management Planning Committee

Flood-Inundation Maps for the DuPage River from Plainfield to Shorewood, Illinois, 2013

By Elizabeth A. Murphy and Jennifer B. Sharpe

Thumbnail of and link to report PDF (1.54 MB)Abstract

Digital flood-inundation maps for a 15.5-mi reach of the DuPage River from Plainfield to Shorewood, Illinois, were created by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) in cooperation with the Will County Stormwater Management Planning Committee. The inundation maps, which can be accessed through the USGS Flood Inundation Mapping Science Web site at depict estimates of the areal extent of flooding corresponding to selected water levels (gage heights or stages) at the USGS streamgage at DuPage River at Shorewood, Illinois (sta. no. 05540500). Current conditions at the USGS streamgage may be obtained on the Internet at In addition, the information has been provided to the National Weather Service (NWS) for incorporation into their Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service (AHPS) flood warning system ( The NWS forecasts flood hydrographs at many places that are often colocated with USGS streamgages. The NWS-forecasted peak-stage information, also shown on the DuPage River at Shorewood inundation Web site, may be used in conjunction with the maps developed in this study to show predicted areas of flood inundation.

In this study, flood profiles were computed for the stream reach by means of a one-dimensional step-backwater model. The hydraulic model was then used to determine nine water-surface profiles for flood stages at 1-ft intervals referenced to the streamgage datum and ranging from NWS Action stage of 6 ft to the historic crest of 14.0 ft. The simulated water-surface profiles were then combined with a Digital Elevation Model (DEM) (derived from Light Detection And Ranging (LiDAR) data) by using a Geographic Information System (GIS) in order to delineate the area flooded at each water level.

These maps, along with information on the Internet regarding current gage height from USGS streamgages and forecasted stream stages from the NWS, provide emergency management personnel and residents with information that is critical for flood response activities such as evacuations and road closures, as well as for postflood recovery efforts.

First posted December 2, 2013

For additional information, contact:
Director, Illinois Water Science Center
1201 W. University Avenue
Suite 100
Urbana, IL 61801
(217) 328-8747

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Suggested citation:

Murphy, E.A. and Sharpe, J.B., 2013, Flood-inundation maps for the DuPage River from Plainfield to Shorewood, Illinois, 2013: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Map 3275, 9 sheets, 8-p. pamphlet,

ISSN 2329-132X (online)




Constructing Water-Surface Profiles

Development of Water-Surface Profiles

Inundation Mapping


References Cited


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