The Church Creek drainage basin today drains a total of area of over 10,000 acres located along the western side of the Ashley River. This area has been studied for over 20 years, and its flat terrain made it difficult to estimate the extent until the advent of modern high-resolution topographic information. We can now appreciate that historically, the area of watershed was much smaller. Early ditches, road construction, and stormwater management have redirected water towards Church Creek and away from other flow paths, enlarging the drainage area.
The area that flows into Church Creek today was once composed mainly of marsh and lowland hardwood forests that were ditched and converted to rice fields and phosphate mines. Today the lower sections of the basin are largely developed. The residential neighborhoods of Shadowmoss, Hickory Hill, Hickory Farms, Grand Oaks, Village Green, Forest Lakes, and Canterbury Woods fall within the Church Creek watershed. Church Creek passes through these neighborhoods in straightened ditches and flows down to marsh and then into the Ashley River under U.S. Highway 61 and the Seaboard Systems Railroad. Upstream of the Seaboard Systems Railroad, portions of the existing channel have been improved between Bees Ferry Road and the railroad.