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The restoration of Delaware Run adjacent to Ohio Wesleyan’s campus has been investigated over the past five years. The Run was channelized more than a century ago, and the channel walls are old and in poor shape. Delaware Run, in general, is facing growing problems with flooding (due to upstream development with, apparently, inadequate controls on run-off), contamination with lawn chemicals and agricultural runoff, and contamination with e. Coli.
The general idea of restoring this stretch of Delaware Run is to provide a means of capturing some of the growing quantity of water while filtering contaminants in the water before they reach the adjacent Olentangy River.
Ideally, this stretch of Delaware Run could be tied to restoration options further upstream. Ideally, the area of Delaware Run along campus could become an outdoor lab, for University and K-12 projects, focused on riparian and water issues. Thus this project would serve both environmental and educational purposes.
Ultimately, this regional approach to the Delaware Run is similar to what are being called Sponge Cities: urban waterway redesign to cope with climate change, water, and water quality.