In a channel with cohesive banks and no marked downstream variation in bank credibility, the downstream rate of width increase is principally a function of discharge, while its at-a-station rate of change is largely controlled by bank material composition, particularly silt-clay content. At-a-station hydraulic geometry is thereby constrained. The deposition of noncohesive sediment in the form of point bars and central islands provides the means whereby the stream can increase its rate of change of width at a cross section, suggesting that meander and braided reaches could be distinguished from straight reaches in terms of the b exponent. The effect of this adjustment is to decrease the mean velocity range.

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