Big Darby Creek and Little Darby Creek

The Far West Side Area Commission’s area includes the Big Darby Creek Watershed.

The Darby Creek system constitutes some of the most important natural resources in central Ohio. The Big and Little Darby Creeks are noted nationally for their tremendous diversity and abundance of both aquatic and terrestrial plants and animals. They are home to 86 species of fish, five of which are endangered in Ohio including the federally endangered Scioto Madtom, which is endemic to the area.

Forty-one species of freshwater mollusk live in these waters, eight of which are on the Ohio endangered list. The Darby Creek watershed covers an area of 556.6 square miles.

American Rivers

American Rivers, a leading river conservation organization, reviews nominations for the America’s Most Endangered Rivers report from river groups and concerned citizens across the country. Rivers are selected based upon the following criteria:

  • A major decision (that the public can help influence) in the coming year on the proposed action;
  • The significance of the river to human and natural communities;
  • The magnitude of the threat to the river and associated communities, especially in light of a changing climate

The report highlights ten rivers whose fate will be decided in the coming year, and encourages decision-makers to do the right thing for the rivers and the communities they support. The Big Darby is listed as as one of the top 10 endangered rivers in the country.

The Columbus Dispatch – Big Darby Creek Among the Most Endangered Rivers in the Nation (4/16/2019)
The Columbus Dispatch Editorial – Ohio could help protect the Big Darby from contamination (4/19/2019)
Columbus Underground – Big Darby Added to ‘Most Endangered’ List (4/16/2019)
Columbus Underground Editorial – Watershed Moment: The Past, Present and Future of Big Darby Creek (4/22/2019)

Big Darby Accord

Nearly half (47%) of the Far West Side Area Commission’s area is part of the Big Darby Accord.

The Big Darby Accord consists of local governments within the Franklin County area of the Big Darby Creek Watershed. The mission of the Big Darby Accord is to cooperatively develop a multi-jurisdictional plan and accompanying preservation and growth strategies, capable of implementation, oversight, and enforcement, which are designed to:

  • Preserve, protect and improve, when possible, the Big Darby Watershed’s unique ecosystem by utilizing the best available science, engineering and land use planning practices;
  • Promote responsible growth by taking measures to provide for adequate public services and facilities and promote a full spectrum of housing choice, as well as adequate educational, recreational, and civic opportunities, for citizens of each jurisdiction and for Central Ohio;
  • Create a partnership that recognizes the identity, aspirations, rights, and duties of all jurisdictions and that develops methods of cooperation among the partners through means which include the cooperative utilization of public services and facilities; and
  • Capitalize on the results of other efforts by considering other local planning and zoning efforts, in the development of the plan.