Streambank Stabilization Demonstration Project

The Oconeewaters’ “Stream Bank Stabilization and Stormwater Educational Outreach Demonstration Project” is a collaborative effort that included the Oconeewaters Committee of the Upper Oconee Watershed Network, the City of Watkinsville, and Oconee County. The City of Watkinsville allocated $2,900.00 and Oconee County’s Water Resources donated equipment and personnel to help complete the project. Oconeewaters also received a $5,000 subgrant as part of the EPA Grant # 00D882218 received by Dr. Allison Bailey Bailey and Dr. Jamie Mitchem from the Institute for Environmental & Spatial Analysis at the University of North Georgia. 

This project will raise awareness about the negative effects of stormwater runoff on local water resources and address streambank erosion problems affecting a segment of Calls Creek in Harris Shoals Park.  This segment of Calls Creek will serve as a demonstration site for landowners desiring a relatively low cost way to reduce stream bank erosion.  In an effort to increase collaboration, Oconeewaters received input and guidance from fellow Adopt-A-Stream volunteers who work in the field of water education and stream restoration in the Metro Atlanta area. This project provided an opportunity to encourage collaboration between citizens, the City, and the County to share knowledge and expertise to make this effort a long term success.

In March of 2020, Oconeewaters volunteers removed invasive plants and installed materials to stabilize the soil and plant native plants. In late June, interpretive signage was erected just above the streambank which provides information about the project. On July 13, 2020, a ribbon cutting was held to mark the completion of the project.

As a team united, Oconeewaters, along with the City and the County, hopes this project will preserve and improve water resources in our local community. Click here to access an informational flyer about this demonstration project. For answers to your questions or to schedule a presentation about the project for your group, please contact Vicki Soutar, UOWN Oconeewaters Chair, at UOWN is a 501(c)3 all-volunteer nonprofit organization with the mission of protecting the Upper Oconee Watershed through monitoring, education, advocacy and recreation.

July 9th meeting

Front row L-R: John Butler; fellow Adopt-A-Stream volunteer, Vicki Soutar; Chair Oconeewaters Committee, Tim Durham; Oconee County Water Resources Director, Sharyn Dickerson; Watkinsville City Manager, Mark Campbell; City Engineer.  Back row L-R: Russell Manley; fellow AAS volunteer and Adam Layfield; Oconee County Water Resources Engineer; Diane Windham; UOWN Board member is behind the camera.