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Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago

Government entities considering protection from flooding have an opportunity to pitch their shovel-ready projects to the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago (MWRD).

The MWRD’s Stormwater Partnership Program is accepting applications to provide funding for shovel-ready stormwater projects now through Feb. 11. Shovel-ready projects have a near finalized design prepared by the partner agency. The MWRD will partner with the community to fund the project, while the partner agency will manage the design, construction and long-term maintenance of the project. 

Butterfield Creek East Branch along Governors Highway in Richton Park
A detention basin at the Butterfield Creek East Branch along Governors Highway in Richton Park is an example of a project funded through the MWRD’s Stormwater Partnership Program.

Submit a pre-application and watch an MWRD webinar

“Following a summer of unprecedented rainstorms, we know that working with local communities to partner and improve their stormwater infrastructure is paramount,” said MWRD President Kari K. Steele. “We urge government officials to respond to our call-to-action and bring the necessary projects in mind to help us build resilient communities across Cook County.” 

The MWRD also hosts similar programs for green infrastructure projects, conceptual stormwater management projects and voluntary flood-prone property acquisitions. Through these programs, the MWRD partners with municipalities to identify solutions and potential funding sources for project implementation. Local governments and public agencies within the MWRD’s corporate boundaries can apply to become partners to fund and build the stormwater management projects.

“It is important to combat climate change together to protect homes and businesses,” said MWRD Commissioner Cam Davis. “If you have a design in mind but need to get your project past the next hurdle, our Stormwater Partnership Program can provide funding and support from our world-class engineers to get water out of basements and back into the environment.”

The MWRD’s Stormwater Partnership Program funds projects that address flooding through a variety of traditional engineering solutions such as localized detention, upsizing critical storm sewers and culverts, pumping stations, establishing drainage ways and green infrastructure. Municipalities, townships, county agencies, park districts, school districts and other government organizations are all eligible to apply. Projects are prioritized on their ability to reduce localized flooding and the number of structures benefitted by the project amongst other criteria.

The mission of the MWRD’s stormwater management program is to protect the safety of Cook County’s residents and minimize flooding damage by coordinating, planning, implementing, financing, and operating regional stormwater management projects and to develop and enforce reasonable rules with respect to watershed development. Between local and regional stormwater management projects, green infrastructure partnerships and flood prone property acquisitions, the MWRD has 245 projects complete or in some phase of design or construction aimed at flood reduction, and the totality of these projects are protecting more than 18,000 structures.

Learn more about stormwater partnership programs

Press Release

Established in 1889, the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago (MWRD) is an award-winning, special purpose government agency responsible for wastewater treatment and stormwater management in Cook County, Illinois.


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