The Sand River Headwaters Green Infrastructure Project
incorporates sustainable development practices
to capture and treat stormwater in downtown watersheds.
Download the Final Project Research Report (Phase I)
The Clemson University Center for Watershed Excellence in partnership with the City of Aiken and the engineering firm Woolpert Inc. designed and implemented natural treatment systems that will greatly enhance stormwater infiltration in downtown watersheds. A watershed is the area of land where all of the water that drains off goes into the same river, lake or other water body. The project objective is to reduce the impact of stormwater on nearby Sand River and Hitchcock Woods (see erosion photo below) by returning to the principles of how stormwater was treated decades ago, prior to the introduction of pavement, driveways and other impervious structures.
The City of Aiken received $3.34 million under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and awarded the Center for Watershed Excellence $293,187 to assist in design of bioswales, rain gardens, permeable paving and other low-impact retrofit practices. Separately, the City of Aiken granted the Center $167,004 to develop a research and monitoring program for Aiken’s Green Infrastructure that taps into Clemson’s Intelligent River® research program.