Evanston starts supplying water to Morton Grove, Niles

Dave Stoneback, left, was among the crew testing the valve to send water to Morton Grove and Niles earlier this month.

Evanston started delivering water to the Morton Grove Niles Water Commission today -- realizing a long-time goal to expand the city's revenue from its water plant.

Evanston Public Works Agency Director Dave Stoneback say deliveries theough the commission's new pipeline started at 9 a.m.

Stoneback says the city will deliver about 5.5 million gallons of water a day for the time being, meaning the two communities will still be drawing some water from Chicago for the next few months.

The pumping station construction site on Church Street today.

By April, when the pumping station the commission is building on Church Street at McDaniel Avenue in Evanston, and a new water standpipe in Morton Grove are completed, Stoneback says, Evanston will start supplying the commission's full water needs, estimated at 7 million to 7.5 million gallons a day.

The Church Street pumping station is needed to provide sufficient water pressure to fill the new elevated storage tank in Morton Grove, off Oakton Street near the Menards store.

Stoneback says once the full volume of water is being delivered, Evanston expects to realize a net gain after expenses of $500,000 a year from the water commission deal.

The switch from Chicago to Evanston water has proved attractive to the two inland communities, despite the substantial initial construction costs they face, because Evanston's water rate is only about one fourth as much as what Chicago now charges them.

The change is forecast to save residents of the two communities $218 million over the next 40 years, after paying off the construction costs.