Conducting rapid fluvialgeomorpic assessments based on the channel evolution model: a case study in Griffin, Georgia
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A variety of fluvial geomorphic assessment methods, such as TMDL development, biological habitat quality assessment, and overall channel characterization, have been developed and are being adopted by organizations for use in assessing stream conditions for a variety of purposes. This paper first summarizes available stream geomorphic assessment methods, detailing their strengths and weaknesses. Then we describe an actual project conducted by Tetra Tech in Griffin, Georgia to show how assessment methods were selected to suit a particular application and how the results were presented to maximize usefulness to the client. The stream channel stability study was conducted on Shoal Creek for the City of Griffin, Georgia, Public Works and Stormwater Department. The focus of the study was to qualitatively assess the potential availability of sediment from channel sources so that the findings could be used to address downstream sedimentation issues. Time and funding constraints led to choosing a qualitative rapid geomorphic assessment method whereby channel evolution and other easily observable field data were collected for the entire watershed. Assessed reaches were then classified by degree of channel stability with results presented as a set of correlated maps, data tables, photographs, and reach narratives. This data set enabled stormwater management decision makers for the City of Griffin to prioritize the specific erosion hot spots for mitigation.