Great Lakes: Recognizing a Global Resource

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 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.