To safely meet growing demands, the District’s main wastewater treatment plant, located on a 20-acre site in Chicago Heights, is engineered for maximum efficiency and dependability, using the most advanced computerized controls. Currently, the plant operates at an average daily flow of 11 million gallons. This is roughly 30% below the plant capacity of 16 million gallons, allowing for future expansion in residential and commercial areas, as well as increased production in the substantial industrial area already served by the District. Because the treatment plant must accept and treat all sewer flows, its processing operation is designed to allow for adjustment to accommodate changes in flow rates and wastewater strength.
Thorn Creek Basin has been honored as the best-operated plant of its class in Illinois. Both an independent engineering team of the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency and a three-state professional engineering association have cited Thorn Creek Basin as a standard for efficiency and environmental control. Individual professional awards have been presented to some of the District’s 31 employees who manage and operate the treatment plant. This operation team includes personnel representing the disciplines of engineering, chemistry, biology, finance, computer operations, management and administration.