The developing nor’easter thrust water from the Tidal Potomac and the Chesapeake Bay over land, resulting in coastal flooding in parts of the region Wednesday.
In Old Town Alexandria, photos showed high waters inundating King Street and its sidewalks. In Annapolis, the Baltimore Sun reported, several streets were closed because of flooding Wednesday morning.
Coastal flood warnings, from the National Weather Service, are in effect through late Wednesday afternoon and early evening.
Generally, the Weather Service is forecasting tides to be about two to three feet above average. Here are some predicted effects from its advisories:
Annapolis (high tide: already occurred late Wednesday morning): Water is expected to come up through storm drains, approaching businesses on Dock Street in Annapolis. Water is expected to approach the Maritime Museum and begin to cover Bowyer Road at the Naval Academy.
District Southwest Waterfront (high tide at 12:01 p.m.): The unprotected area on the Southwest Waterfront at the DC Seafood Market is expected to flood. Water is expected to approach parts of the Hains Point Loop Road, but it will likely be closed.
Old Town (high tide at 12:19 p.m.): Water is expected to approach buildings near King Street and Union Street.
Baltimore (high tide occurred late this morning): Water is expected to approach homes in the Bowleys Quarters area. Flooding is expected at the end of Thames Street in Baltimore. Water also is expected to cover the promenade at the dragon boat dock in the Inner Harbor.
The Weather Service said that flood levels had probably peaked as of midday. “The overall trend through the remainder of the day will be downward with the water levels,” its late morning discussion said. “Therefore, warnings will be lower to advisories during the course of the day into this evening. The next high tide will bring water levels up, but most places not nearly as high as previous levels.”
In recent years, coastal flooding in the overall region has increased because of rising sea levels from climate warming. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has documented a major uptick in “nuisance flooding,” that leads to “public inconveniences as frequent road closures, overwhelmed storm drains and compromised infrastructure.”
Coastal flooding that, in the past, occurred only during major storms, now occurs during weaker storms as well as during certain moon cycles.