(2019) Jordan Creek Underground - Flow and Water Quality Assessment


The City of Springfield has contracted the Ozarks Environmental and Water Resources Institute (OEWRI) at Missouri State University (MSU) to measure stream flow and sample water quality parameters in the Jordan Creek Underground to determine potential inputs from leaking sewer lines and other shallow groundwater sources.

Exfiltration losses from leaking sanitary sewer systems can cause pollution problems in receiving streams, and water quality surveys have been used to locate wastewater exfiltration from sanitary sewers into local streams successfully. Jordan Creek is located in central Springfield, Missouri and flows through an underground box culvert that was built in 1928 within the old industrial area of downtown.

The purpose of this study is to quantify variations in wastewater exfiltration indicators at base flow along a 4,400 foot reach of the Jordan Creek that includes an area that flows through the underground box culvert between Grant Ave and Sherman Parkway in downtown Springfield.


  1. Perform a source risk assessment using GIS analysis of the segment to locate sewer line crossings, inflowing tributaries, local springs, faults and other geologic features, and permitted point discharges;
  2. Collect stream discharge information to quantify flow changes within the box culvert;
  3. Collect field-based temperature, dissolved oxygen, pH, and specific conductivity and water quality samples to be analyzed in the laboratory for total phosphorus, total nitrogen, chloride, and E. coli concentrations at equally spaced stream locations throughout the study reach and;
  4. Make specific recommendations to the City of Springfield and its engineers regarding site prioritization based on results from this exfiltration risk assessment.



The City of Springfield, Missouri

City of Springfield