Encyclopedia o f Chicago
Interpretive Digital Essay : Water in Chicago
Water in Chicago
Essay: People and the Port
Photo Essays:
Solitary Lives
City of Bridges
Chicago Harbors
Essay: Using the Chicago River
Photo Essays:
Goose Island
Indiana Dunes
Essay: Sanitation in Chicago
Photo Essays:
The Sanitary and Ship Canal
Water-Related Epidemics
Essay: Water and Urban Life
Photo Essays:
Houses and Water
Shoreline Development
Growing Up Along Water
Chicago's Deep Tunnel System in 2003
Return to "Sanitation in Chicago"

The Deep Tunnel System was created to ameliorate the sewer and pollution problems of storm runoff events. Most of it has been built under existing waterways where storm sewers and other runoff sources already converge, resulting in a discontinuous network as a whole. Such waterway locations, publicly owned, also simplified construction. The system is designed to collect excess stormwater into reservoirs for later treatment and gradual release.