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​A watershed, or drainage basin, is a land area that drains into a stream; the watershed for a major river may encompass a number of smaller watersheds that ultimately combine at a common point (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency). Each drainage basin is separated topographically from adjacent basins by a geographical barrier, such as a ridge or hill, which is known as a water divide.


To begin to understand how drainage basins work, it is important to understand the basic topography of the land. The lowest point of Kenmore is where Lake Washington and the Sammamish River meet (18ft above sea level). Over time, the rivers and creeks that flowed over the landscape met at these low points and began to carve out the waterways we see today. The storm water system is also gravity fed to mimic the natural tendency of the water. The basins are a mixture of free-flowing/open-channel creeks and the man-made stormwater infrastructure. Their characteristics and land-use percentages can be found on their “Basin Report Cards


Last updated: Thu, 02/15/2018 - 12:03pm