Facility Planning Area Process
The State of Illinois uses the Facility Planning Area (FPA) to aid in evaluating plans for providing wastewater treatment services. A "facility planning area" is where a Designated Management Agency (DMA) may provide wastewater treatment services and can plan for such services over a 20-year planning period. The map below illustrates growth within FPA boundaries planning within Northeastern Illinois from the Year 2001 to the Year 2007.
CMAP is the areawide planning agency  for northeastern Illinois, providing a preliminary review of wastewater treatment plans and making a recommendation to the IEPA, through its Wastewater Committee, of whether it should deny or approve the request. Traditionally, this review has been very comprehensive. It not only examined the level of treatment at a specific wastewater treatment plant, but also evaluated numerous inextricably related issues such as the quality of local surface waters, nonpoint sources of pollution, the sufficiency of ordinances to control, prevent, and mitigate impacts of such pollution, proposed control measures, wastewater treatment alternatives, cost effectiveness of treatment alternatives, jurisdictional boundaries, agricultural preservation, and municipal planning.
The FPA process promotes progressive wastewater and land use planning by evaluating the impact of different wastewater treatment alternatives on water quality and aquatic life, as well as the justification and consequence of expanding FPA service areas. For example, the City of Woodstock, in anticipation of requesting approval of expanding the capacity and service area of its southern WWTF, has tentatively agreed to reduce its requested service area from 8,935 to 3,874 acres. This reduction of 5,061 acres will promote compact growth and development, protecting both water quality and agricultural uses in the area. The City of Woodstock, after analyzing the impacts of discharging greater volumes and concentrations and flow of effluent into the Kishwaukee River, is also considering more stringent effluent limits to protect this valuable natural resource. These include nitrogen removal and construction of an enhancement wetland. In addition, as part of a pilot watershed planning effort, it has agreed to conduct a stream characterization (monitoring) study and dedicate funding for river restoration projects. These early efforts at the planning stages are exemplary illustrations of how the FPA process can make a tremendous difference in developing and enhancing proactive solutions to safeguard our waterways and guiding smart growth in the region. CMAP can continue to play a leadership role in this comprehensive approach by using its staff expertise to perform critical reviews of FPA expansion proposals and provide recommendations, through its Wastewater Committee, to DMAs and the IEPA on the steps needed to protect and improve the quality of our region's waters.
To understand the significance of monitoring point source and nonpoint source controls, the environmental, economic, and health impacts from these sources must be closely examined. By grasping a thorough understanding of these impacts and implementing a comprehensive approach to watershed management, the region can strive to accomplish the goals of the Clean Water Act by the year 2040.
 Pursuant to Section 208(a) of the Clean Water Act, Governor Walker designated the Northeastern Illinois Planning Commission (NIPC) as the areawide planning agency for water quality management planning activities in the six-county northeastern Illinois region. (Governor Walker Executive Order, May 13, 1975) As the designated areawide planning agency, NIPC assumed certain responsibilities under the Clean Water Act. Section 208(b)(1)(A) of the Clean Water Act states that "[n
]o t later than one year after the date of designation … [NIPC] shall have in operation a continuing areawide waste treatment management planning process consistent with section 201 of this Act." Effective July 1, 2007, the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP) assumed NIPC's former responsibility for water quality management planning activities as outlined in SB 1201.