The Illinois Pollution Control Board submitted an order Thursday that would begin the process of cleaning up many Chicagoland waterways.
The order follows a letter from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to make waterways such as the Chicago River, Cal-Sag Channel and Little Calumet River safe enough for people to swim in them.
Chicago is the only U.S. city to ignore some some of the sanitation measures, many of which come from the 1972 Clean Air Act, the Chicago Tribune noted.
Officials have said that cleansing these waterways could provide more usable space for residents.
The order will require two massive treatment plants to be overhauled in an effort to sanitate the waterways, which the EPA estimates will cost $72 million.
However, the initiatives would cost Cook County homeowners no more than $7 a month.