City of Evanston

Water Quality Lab Expansion

The Water Quality Lab provides testing for water from Lake Michigan, which is purified to provide drinking water to the city. Water also is tested during new project construction and during any water main repairs or replacement. The lab also includes space for the Forestry Department to test area trees for Dutch Elm Disease and testing of area beach water to ensure safe swimming conditions during the summer.

The lab is housed in a 1940s-era building that has undergone minor updates but no significant changes in its 80 years of existence. Challenges with the current lab include poor heating and cooling, an inefficient layout and poor flow of people through the lab.

HERA led a programming and planning session, using HERA’s planning model to collaboratively work with the user group on a lab redesign.

After considering an expansion and renovation option, the City selected the renovation option. Work includes a separate lab for the microbiology lab, better division between the various groups using the lab, and improving the building’s HVAC system, including adding radiant flooring to the lab.


Evanston, Illinois


3,400 GSF


Lab programming, schematic design, equipment specification assistance, CD peer review


McGuire Igleski & Associates, Inc.