Illinois American Water invested over $122 million in water and wastewater upgrades in 2018. The 2018 construction season included installing approximately 198,000 feet (more than 38 miles) of water main and approximately 3,700 feet of sewer main as well as lining approximately 3,200 feet of water main and about 21,100 feet of sewer main.
Illinois American Water also upgraded water treatment processes, equipment, security and technology to comply with drinking water standards and enhance system reliability and resilience. In addition, hundreds of fire hydrants and water meters were installed or replaced across the state.
According to Bruce Hauk, Illinois American Water President, much of last year’s investment focused on upgrading aging infrastructure. He said, “Water systems across the country are experiencing critical infrastructure reaching the end of its useful life. At Illinois American Water we invest proactively and prudently to deliver reliable service today and for future generations. Continued investment helps to ensure adequate water pressure and flow to homes and businesses for public health and safety.”
Illinois American Water’s continued investment in critical infrastructure also contributes to the economy. In 2018, American Water partnered with the University of Illinois Regional Economic Applications Laboratory (REAL) to analyze the company’s impact on the economy in Illinois over a five-year period (2013–17). The study included data for not only Illinois American Water operations but also other American Water subsidiaries operating and located in Illinois including the company’s national Customer Service Center (Alton), National Laboratory (Belleville), American Water Resources, Pivotal Home Solutions and Military Services Group and Contract Services Group.
The study showed American Water’s overall economic impact was $223 million to $245 million per year, for a total, estimated economic Impact of $1.17 billion. Highlights of the study included:
- American Water generated between 2,657 and 2,826 jobs per year in Illinois.
- American Water employed an average of 1,000 people across the state of Illinois.
- American Water paid an average of $52 million in salaries and wages to its employees in Illinois.
Hauk said, “Our continued investments not only demonstrate our commitment to keep life flowing for our customers – providing the high-quality, reliable water and wastewater service they depend every day, but also our commitment to the economic health of the communities we serve.”
In 2019, Illinois American Water expects to invest over $100 million to upgrade to critical water and wastewater infrastructure across its Illinois service areas.