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UNC-Chapel Hill is in the Jordan Lake Watershed in the Cape Fear River Basin. The University’s stormwater system is comprised of thousands of catch basins and inlets, over 60 miles of piping, hundreds of stormwater control measures and outfalls that discharge stormwater to Meeting of the Waters Creek, Bolin Creek, Battle Branch, Chapel Creek, Morgan Creek and Crow Branch Creek.

A drop of rain that falls in the Pit eventually makes its way to the Atlantic Ocean via the Cape Fear River, but not before taking an underground trip through the UNC-Chapel Hill campus. Everything that flows into stormwater drains on campus impacts downstream people, plants, and animals who depend on water in Jordan Lake and the Cape Fear River.

While Morgan Creek provides a clean source of drinking water upstream from campus, at University Lake, downstream conditions in the stream have deteriorated.  Surveys by NC Division of Water Resources staff have classified the stream as impaired due to poor benthic biology and fish communities. About three miles downstream from Finley Fields, Morgan Creek discharges into Jordan Lake. Jordan Lake is also impaired and suffers from algal blooms during the summer due to nutrient over-enrichment.

Jordan Lake Watershed Map
This map shows the location of the Jordan Lake watershed in the center of North Carolina. It also shows the UNC campus location, which is less than 10 miles northwest of the lake.