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Niles joins feasibility study on water pipeline from Evanston

Niles trustees authorized paying $30,000 toward a study looking at the feasibility of getting water from Evanston instead of Chicago.

Des Plaines also has voted to join the study, and Park Ridge, Lincolnwood and Morton Grove are among those who may also seek to purchase water from Evanston.

“We are going to get on board,” Niles Mayor Bob Callero said. “We’ll see what happens. It’s a big project. We’re only in the early phases.”

A new pipeline would be needed to transport the water from Evanston to Niles and the other communities. The engineering feasibility study will determine the pipeline size, method of construction, route and cost. The entire price tag for the study is $150,000, according to a village memo.

At its Feb. 28 meeting, the Niles Village Board also approved an ordinance that authorizes village staff to negotiate a water contract with Evanston.

Chicago water rates increased 25 percent this year and will rise 15 percent again for the next three years.

Evanston charges Skokie $1 per 1,000 gallons of water, but how much they would charge after the completion of a water pipeline is unknown.

“We know how much they are charging now,” said Trustee Joe Lo Verde. “But we don’t know what the final results could be.”

Early estimates indicate it could cost $4 to $8 million for Niles to join the Evanston water system.

Wilmette and Glenview are also considering the creation of expanded Lake Michigan water disbursements to other areas.

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