Zone 9 Watershed Goals

San Luis Obispo Creek at avila valley
SLO Creek

Watershed Goals

From the SLO Waterway Management Plan, the Zone 9 Advisory Committee developed eight watershed management goals addressing the following issues:

  • Flooding
  • Erosion
  • Water Quality
  • Biological Resources
  • Land Use
  • Social Values
  • Public Involvement & Education
  • Inter-Agency Coordination

For each of the issues, action items were identified toward achieving those goals.  The section below is excerpted from the SLO Waterway Management Plan:


A well-managed watershed is needed for a healthy stream ecosystem. The condition of the
watershed directly affects a number of important stream functions, including summer low flow
or base flow, peak flows and flood flows, channel bank stability and channel bed conditions,
and water quality. Upland erosion of farmland and grazing land is a significant component of a
watershed management plan, as is fire management and damage repair following wildfire in
steep brushy and wooded watersheds, such as upper SLO Creek. In addition, watershed
management and land use along the immediate stream corridor can also affect the streamside
riparian zone that provides important shading and food resources to the creek system. Severe
bank erosion can result in the loss of the riparian corridor.

Important upland habitat areas should be connected to the creek zones in some areas to allow
movement of wildlife species between habitat types, and the creek riparian zones should not be
fragmented, which prevents some species from moving safely under vegetative cover along the
creek zone.

Although preparation of a detailed watershed management plan is not a part of the Phase II
scope of work, some guidance and an overall framework is provided in this section, based on
the results of the resource inventories and hydrologic studies.

A framework consisting of general management Goals, which respond to the identified
management needs, problems and opportunities, as well as a list of recommended Action Items
is provided. This framework can be used in future watershed planning efforts to focus on
problem and priority areas, and to provide direction on important issues to resolve. A
Watershed Enhancement Plan was recently prepared for the SLO creek watershed by the SLO
Land Conservancy (2002), under a grant from the State Coastal Conservancy. Together these
documents can direct future management efforts in this watershed.