Pekara Water System - Lake Michigan Water Connection (ARPA Funded)

Project Location: An area south of Aptakisic Road between IL Route 21/Milwaukee Avenue and Weiland Road in the Buffalo Grove area. View the project map

Project Description: Lake County Public Works (LCPW) is currently in the Design Engineering phase for a project that will bring Lake Michigan Water to the Pekara and Horatio Gardens neighborhoods in the Buffalo Grove area. 

This project will replace the groundwater wells that are currently the primary source of water in these neighborhoods with a water system connection to Lake Michigan. View the project timeline.

Why is a new water source needed?

While the current well water system meets all Illinois EPA requirements, the community has expressed concerns over water aesthetics, such as taste, smell, and hardness. Wells are not sustainable long-term and can be costly to upgrade. LCPW is working to bring Lake Michigan Water to the Pekara and Horatio Gardens neighborhoods, which will provide a high-quality water source to the community. Lake Michigan Water is used in many other water systems throughout Lake County.

About Lake Michigan Water

Lake County and Buffalo Grove finalized a 20-year agreement that would provide Lake Michigan Water from the Village sourced via the Northwest Water Commission. Lake Michigan Water provides the following benefits:

  • Reliable water source that eliminates the concern of groundwater wells
  • Aesthetically pleasing 
    • Lower concentration of minerals (i.e., Sodium, Iron)
    • Helps eliminate wear on appliances and filtration systems
    • Eliminates the need for water softeners
    • Reduces build-up on taps/faucets 
  • Continues to meet all Illinois EPA (IEPA) and USEPA regulatory requirements 

Cost Breakdown

The projected total cost of the project is $2.7 million. The County Board has allocated $1.1 million in ARPA funds toward this project and Lake County will fund the additional construction cost. 

  • As a result of switching to a new water source, customers will see an increase in their water rate due to the increased cost of water delivery. This increase varies depending on how much water customers use. 
  • Due to all construction costs being funded by ARPA and other County resources, customers will not be charged the following:
    • Connection Fees
    • Special Service Area Taxes

Your Water Bill

The table below shows current and future costs on the amount billed per 1,000 gallons per tier.  Rates are slotted into three tiers determined by your water usage - the cost per 1,000 gallons increases with each tier. 


Current (Wells)Future (Lake Michigan)*
Tier 1$1.28$6.70
Tier 2$6.13$11.03
Tier 3$6.74$11.8

*The future rates displayed above are what the current cost would be in 2023 (includes $6.36 Lake Michigan Water pass-through cost). Rates are subject to change by the time the project is completed in accordance with Lake County's rate ordinance and the agreement with Buffalo Grove.

How do I say informed? 

Receive updates via email by signing up for project updates.

Community Meeting Materials

On Nov. 6, 2023, LCPW hosted a community meeting to provide detailed information on the project. The informational materials shown at the meeting can be found below. 


  1. Project Contact
  2. Project Documents

Marc Bourgault, P.E.
Principal Engineer
847-377-7500
[email protected]