The Detroit Water and Sewerage Department (DWSD) is one of the largest water and sewer utilities in the United States, serving more than 235,000 accounts that includes a residential population of nearly 700,000. DWSD’s water network consists of more than 2,700 miles of water main and nearly 3,000 miles of sewer collection piping. DWSD has a rich history as a public utility dating back to 1836.
Today, DWSD focuses on serving the residents, businesses, non-profits, faith-based organizations and other account holders that rely on water and sewer services within the city of Detroit.
On January 1, 2016, the City of Detroit began leasing regional water and sewer infrastructure, as well as water and wastewater treatment facilities, to the Great Lakes Water Authority (GLWA). The regional system, built by DWSD, serves 126 municipalities in seven southeast Michigan counties. The agreement between DWSD and GLWA includes a $50 million annual lease payment for 40 years to replace and rehabilitate DWSD’s aging water and sewer system. DWSD continues to retain ownership of the regional assets.
The Detroit Board of Water Commissioners approved the Capital Improvement Plan at its June 7, 2017 meeting. It was subsequently approved by the Detroit City Council.