The Great Lakes contain 21 percent of the world’s fresh water, serving about 40 million people. Despite its critical role, unchecked development along the lakefront has contributed to a decrease in water levels and a rise in pollution — an issue of grave concern among communities in the region.
As a longtime leader in guiding growth in the Great Lakes area, SOM has devised a 100-year plan that outlines measures to protect the lake system and promote sustainable development. The pro-bono initiative calls for tapping into renewable energy resources, improving regional transit options, and creating a bi-national park (shared by the United States and Canada) with 11,000 miles of waterfront. The comprehensive scheme also aims to unite municipalities in the Great Lakes area by engaging leaders in discussions about common challenges and solutions.