The Lake County Public Water District provides Lake Michigan drinking water to the City of Zion, Village of Winthrop Harbor and the Illinois Department of Natural Resources (Illinois Beach State Park and North Point Marina) on a non-profit basis pursuant to contractual arrangements. The District is willing to serve other interested communities pursuant to contract.

The District’s present treatment facilities came online in 1970. Significant plant additions were undertaken in 1979, 1986, 1992, and 1998. The plant today is capable of supplying its existing customers a maximum flow of 4.5 million gallons per day (MGD). Another addition to the plant is in progress to be completed during 2010 which will further increase capacity to 6.5 MGD. All these facilities are under automatic process control which allows 24/7 operational supervision of the process with a small operating staff. This smaller staff means significant cost savings for the District’s customers, without any sacrifice in water quality. In fact, the District has achieved many compliance certificates for meeting and exceeding federal and state regulations.

The District prides itself on staying abreast of new developments in the field of drinking water treatment. For example, the District was the first governmental entity in Illinois to pilot-test ultra- filtration membranes as a new process for the treatment of Lake Michigan water. This test program was successful and provided the District with first hand knowledge of this state of the art, low cost, treatment process that is now available for future plant expansions. This is a further demonstration that the District strives to be a low cost provider of high quality water to all of its customers.

Public access to the District’s facilities is limited due to security and operational concerns, but tours can often be arranged with adequate notice and after providing satisfactory identification of all participants. For more information, please call the District’s office at 847-746-2052.

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