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Alternative Supply Water Program (ASWP)


Sustainable Water Source Update 

Festival Crowd | Village of Shorewood Parks and Recreation

March 2022

On Tuesday, January 25, 2022, the Shorewood Village Board unanimously voted to become the third member of a newly formed Regional Water Commission (RWC) that will deliver Lake Michigan water to the southwest suburban region by 2030.

The Village currently provides residents and businesses with groundwater from six wells.  Several years ago, scientists from the University of Illinois discovered the sandstone aquifer that our region relies upon for groundwater is declining and may not be a reliable by 2030.  In addition to the aquifer sustainability issue, more recent data has revealed the possibility that some area shallow wells could contain currently unregulated contaminates such as PFAS and PFOS.  While recent sampling shows that these contaminates do not exist in Shorewood’s shallow wells, some nearby systems have found evidence of these contaminates in the initial sampling regiment conducted by the Illinois EPA in 2020 and 2021. 

The Village has been preparing to switch from the sandstone aquifer to Lake Michigan water.  Lake Michigan is one of largest fresh water sources in the world and currently provides water to most of the Chicagoland area.  By early 2021, several options to install the needed infrastructure and purchase Lake Michigan water from neighboring communities had been identified.  In the spring of 2021, Village Staff compiled data for all of the options available and presented this data to the Village Board on July 22nd, 2021.  After analyzing the various options, the Village Board determined that there were only two (2) viable options, one of which is the Regional Water Commission (RWC) that Shorewood unanimously voted to join on January 25, 2022.

Moving forward, the various communities involved will continue to meet on a regular basis to guide in the structuring of the commission governance and aid with technical direction.  Each community that becomes a member of this commission will have their own internal infrastructure improvements to complete prior to receiving Lake Michigan water in 2030. 

Shorewood will continue to work on the financial and engineering aspects of the project to plan for these improvements.  The Village Board is committed to completing these improvements in an efficient, timely, and affordable manner.

The approval by these Governing Bodies to form the RWC will provide a reliable source of safe clean water to the region for generations to come.


Questions about the Alternate Water Source Program and Regional Water Commission can be directed to Noriel Noriega, Public Works Director, at (815) 553-2323 or

Background/Project Reports

2014 - Water Supply Project Plan

2019 - Final Engineering Progress Update

2020 - Progress Update

2020 - Analysis of Risk to Sandstone Water Supply in the Southwest Suburbs of Chicago (Illinois State Water Survey)

2020 - Shorewood, IL: Sandstone Water Supply Summary (Illinois State Water Survey)

2021 - Regional Water Commission Prospectus

2022 - Water Commission Membership Finalized