Providing safe, clean and affordable drinking water is a fundamental responsibility of local government.
For nearly four decades, the villages of Morton Grove and Niles have reliably supplied clean, safe Lake Michigan water from the City of Chicago’s treatment and transmission systems.
While the quality and consistency of the water supply was never in question, Chicago’s rising water rates set our communities on a path for unsustainable water rate increases. As both water supply contracts with Chicago near expiration, Morton Grove and Niles formed the Morton Grove Niles Water Commission with the goal of providing residents with a viable alternative to costly Chicago water.
The project will build a new water supply system through Skokie, connecting our communities to Evanston’s pumping station. This will result in a cost savings for Morton Grove and Niles of $21,000 per day and stabilized water prices for residents, making much needed water system infrastructure improvements obtainable. An updated water system will result in fewer water main breaks, less water loss and reduced costs of operation and maintenance.
Due to the size and scope of this project, Morton Grove, Niles and Skokie residents will see a total of $8.5 million in infrastructure improvements including newly reconstructed streets, curbs, gutters and sidewalks. Additionally, residents along the construction project route whose existing lead service lines are exposed by construction are eligible to have them replaced with copper lines at no cost to the homeowner; a value of up to $10,000.
The short-term, tangible results are surpassed only by the long-term benefits this project provides our residents. Over the course of 40 years, by switching our supply from Chicago to Evanston, our residents will save a projected $218 million in water costs in addition to paying off the upfront costs of construction.
This significant project is a collaboration between local leaders seeking good fiscal stewardship of our communities and better results for our residents. The sizeable cost savings and needed investments in infrastructure will positively benefit our communities for years to come.
We welcome your feedback and are happy to answer any questions you have. As Mayors of Morton Grove and Niles, we remain committed to ensuring that our communities remain places where families can thrive. To learn more about this project, visit mg-n-wc.org or contact the message center at (847) 588-7979.
-Mayor of Morton Grove, Dan DiMaria and Mayor of Niles, Andrew Przybylo