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McLane Creek Basin

Basin OverviewMcLane Creek Watershed Aerial Photo

The McLane Creek Basin encompasses more than 7,000 acres that drain into McLane Creek and its tributaries, including Beatty Creek, Cedar Flats Creek, Perkins Creek, and Swift Creek. The basin – one of Thurston County’s most ecologically intact basins that discharges to Puget Sound – is home to around 1,300 people. The population is projected to grow by about 30 percent by 2035, to around 1,700 people.

Though the basin is rural – with about 3 percent impervious surfaces and greater than 70 percent tree canopy cover – it is still impacted by residential development, as well as agricultural and forest practices. Livestock waste, leaking septic systems, and pet waste are the main human-controlled pollutants in McLane Creek, which contributes half of the bacterial load to Eld Inlet.

While the basin is relatively healthy today, future development and changes in land use could impact forest cover along streams and increase stormwater runoff, exacerbating water quality issues. The aim of this project is to identify policies that can be put in place now to preserve the health of the basin into the future.

A final report with recommendations was completed in June 2015.

Public Outreach

A survey was sent out to landowners in the summer of 2013 to gather initial feedback. On April 9, 2014, Thurston County and TRPC hosted a public workshop on water resources for McLane Creek (and nearby Black Lake). The following information was presented at that meeting:

The project team used information from a modeling study and community outreach to draft options for how the area could be managed in the future. We presented the following information at a second workshop on October 9, 2014.

This project has been funded wholly or in part by the United States Environmental Protection Agency under assistance agreement (PO -00J12401-0) to Thurston County. The contents of this website do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the Environmental Protection Agency, nor does mention of trade names or commercial products constitute endorsement or recommendation for use.


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